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Turkey blast was 'suicide attack'

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(CNN) -- A suicide bomber was behind the rush-hour blast that tore through an Ankara shopping district Tuesday, killing at least five people and wounding at least 100 others, the governor of Ankara said Wednesday.

Governor Kamal Onal identified the attacker as Guven Akkus, adding that Akkus had two criminal records from previous incidents.

The "act of terror," Onal said, was the work of the radical, separatist Kurdistan Workers Party -- known by its acronym PKK. Its fighters have been staging attacks against Turkey in the country's southeast and from the Kurdish region of neighboring Iraq.

The incident occurred in a busy shopping area of the city -- Ulus -- during an international defense fair, where companies show their wares to militaries. (Watch as ambulances rush to the scene of the attack.)

Shortly after the blast, anti-terror squad police arrived to the scene and later reported finding traces of A4 plastic explosives. Police said the kind of explosive believed to be used in the bombing is often utilized by the PKK.

News video showed bloody, injured people, some being carried onto stretchers. Body parts were seen by witnesses. Ambulances were at the scene, and debris and wreckage were strewn about.

Although predominantly Muslim, Turkey is a secular country.

There has been a lot of tension in the country between secularist and traditional Muslims, and the state has been battling Kurdish separatists for many years.

This is a politically tense time because the country is gearing up for general elections this summer, where Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's AK party, a moderate movement with Islamist roots, faces a showdown with the country's secularists.


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