August 2016 Gaziantep bombing

Coordinates: 37°02′22″N 37°23′34″E / 37.039528°N 37.392846°E / 37.039528; 37.392846
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August 2016 Gaziantep bombing
Part of Turkey–ISIL conflict
August 2016 Gaziantep bombing is located in Turkey
August 2016 Gaziantep bombing
LocationŞahinbey, Gaziantep, Turkey
Coordinates37°02′22″N 37°23′34″E / 37.039528°N 37.392846°E / 37.039528; 37.392846
Date20 August 2016 (2016-08-20)
22:50 EEST (UTC+03)
TargetWedding ceremony
Attack type
Suicide bombing, Mass murder
Injured66 (14 critically)[1][2]
PerpetratorIslamic State of Iraq and the Levant
AssailantSuicide bomber

On 20 August 2016, a suicide bomber targeted a Kurdish wedding in Gaziantep, Turkey. 57 people were killed[1][2][3][4][5] and 66 injured in the attack, 14 critically.[1][2]


On 20 August 2016, a suicide bomber targeted a wedding party in Gaziantep, Turkey, at 10:50pm local time.[6] More than 200 people were present at the party. The attack targeted a Kurdish family who had fled the Kurdish town of Siirt due to Turkish-PKK violence,[7] and occurred during the traditional henna night party according to witnesses.[8] The groom was injured in the attack, but the bride escaped unharmed. The groom's injuries were described as non-life-threatening.[8][9] A witness reported that two suspicious individuals had approached the party and left the scene following the attack.[10] The security forces have been looking for these two suspects.[9] The Kurdish Peoples Democratic Party (HDP) announced that the attack had been carried out against a wedding of their party members.[11] Mahmut Toğrul, an MP of the HDP for Gaziantep, deemed the attack was a retaliation for the losses the Islamic State (IS) had to endure in Syria against the People's Defense Units (YPG).[12] Footage from the scene of the attack was banned by Turkey's broadcast regulator RTUK.[13] The attack came hours after Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said that Turkey could play an active role in the Syrian civil war.[9]

A total of 57 people were killed[1][2][3][4][5] while 66 people were injured in the attack.[1][2] A high proportion of the fatalities were children, with 34 of the dead being under 18. Thirteen of those killed were women.[14] Among those injured, 66 were reported as remaining in hospital as of 22 August, and the condition of 14 was reported as serious.[14]


The IS and Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK)[15] were earlier blamed for the attack by AKP parliamentary officials, though no group has yet claimed responsibility.[13][16] Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said the attacker was believed to be between 12 and 14 years old. He also stated that the attack had probably been carried out by IS.[6]

The Prime Minister, Binali Yıldırım, stated a day later that Turkish authorities were still trying to determine who carried out the attack, and whether the bomber was a child or an adult.[17] As of 22 August 2016, DNA tests were underway to ascertain the identity of the perpetrator.[18]


  •  Azerbaijan: President Ilham Aliyev sent a letter of condolence to the Turkish President.[19]
  •  Egypt: Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid stressed that "the Egyptian people stand by the Turkish people in these critical moments".[19]
  •  France: French President François Hollande condemned the attack and offered condolences to authorities and people of Turkey. Foreign minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, tweeted, France is beside Turkey after this cowardly attack.[10]
  •  Greece: Foreign Ministry condemned the attack on its Twitter account.[20]
  •  Iran: Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Bahram Qasemi has strongly condemned a bomb blast targeting a wedding ceremony in Turkey's southeastern province of Gaziantep. "Carrying out such terrorist acts in a wedding ceremony and the killing of defenseless people and civilians once again clearly displayed the ominous and anti-human goals of Takfiri terrorism," Qasemi said.[citation needed]
  •  Pakistan: Pakistani Foreign Ministry strongly condemning the attack released a statement. "Pakistan condemns this despicable act of terrorism in the strongest possible terms. We extend our profound sympathies and condolences to the brotherly people and Government of Turkey. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those who have lost their loved ones. We also pray for the speediest recovery of the wounded".[20][21]
  •  Palestine: President Mahmoud Abbas decried the attack and offered condolences to his Turkish counterpart, Turkish people and families of the victims.[19]
  •  Qatar: Qatar's Foreign Ministry condemned the attack and expressed Qatar's support for Turkey's effort to maintain stability and security in the region.[19]
  •  Russia: President Vladimir Putin called President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to offer condolences following the attack.[20]
  •  Saudi Arabia: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs strongly denounced the attack, and backed Turkey's measures against terrorism.[19]
  •  Sweden: Sweden's Foreign Minister Margot Wallström "vehemently condemned" the attack.[19]
  • Northern Cyprus Turkish Republic of North Cyprus: President Mustafa Akıncı condemned the attack and expressed his country's support and solidarity.[19]
  •  United Arab Emirates: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation condemned the attack and denounced all forms of terrorism.[9][19]
  •  United States: The US embassy in Ankara condemned the attack.[20]
  •  United Kingdom: On his Twitter account, British Ambassador to Turkey Richard Moore condemned this attack along with previous PKK attacks.[22]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "29 children killed in Gaziantep attack as death toll rises to 54". Hurriyet Daily News. 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Death toll rises to 54 in SE Turkey wedding attack". Yeni Şafak. 22 August 2016. Archived from the original on 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  3. ^ a b c Hume, Tim; Sariyuce, Isil; Sterling, Joe (22 August 2016). "Turkey backtracks on age of wedding bomber". CNN. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  4. ^ a b c "Turkey strikes Daesh positions in Syria's Jarablous, PKK's Syrian wing also takes hit". Daily Sabah. 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  5. ^ a b c "Death toll rises to 57 in ISIL Gaziantep attack". Hürriyet Daily News. 25 September 2016. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Suicide bomber at Turkish wedding was as young as 12, president says". Fox News. 21 August 2016. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  7. ^ "Turkey wedding suicide bomber 'was child aged 12-14'". BBC. 21 August 2016. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  8. ^ a b "Bombing at wedding party in southern Turkey kills at least 50". Reuters. 20 August 2016. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  9. ^ a b c d WAM, AFP (21 August 2016). "At least 50 killed in Turkey wedding attack near Syria border". Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  10. ^ a b Coker, Margaret; Grove, Thomas (21 August 2016). "Wedding Blast in Southern Turkey Kills at Least 50". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  11. ^ "HDP'den Gaziantep açıklaması: Parti üyelerimizin düğününe yapılan saldırıyı lanetliyoruz". Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  12. ^ Letsch, Constanze (22 August 2016). "Erdoğan blames Isis for suspected suicide attack at wedding in Turkey". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 November 2022.
  13. ^ a b AFP (21 August 2016). "At least 30 killed in Turkey wedding attack near Syria border". Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  14. ^ a b "Turkey Kurdish wedding bomber 'may not have been child'". BBC. 22 August 2016. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  15. ^ AFP. "UPDATE: Turkey wedding attack toll rises to 50 - Khaleej Times". Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  16. ^ "Bomb attack on wedding kills at least 27 in southern Turkey: Erdogan". Reuters. 20 August 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  17. ^ "Turkey unsure if wedding party bomber a 'child or a grown-up'". USA Today. 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  18. ^ "Gaziantep: Turkey seeks to identify child bomber". Al Jazeera. 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h "World condemns deadly terror attack on Turkish wedding". Anadolu Agency. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  20. ^ a b c d "World powers condemn Daesh attack, express solidarity with Turkey". Daily Sabah. 21 August 2016. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  21. ^ "Pakistan condemns terror attack on wedding in SE Turkey". Anadolu Agency. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  22. ^ Gumrucku, Tuvan (21 August 2016). "Turkey wedding explosion: 50 dead and more than 69 injured". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 23 August 2016. Retrieved 21 August 2016.