Three terrorists took a taxi to Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport last Tuesday, entered the terminal, and began shooting. All three blew themselves up by detonating explosive vests; one of the terrorists was shot several times but still managed to blow himself up in the massacre that has to date killed 42 and wounded 238, according to a June 29 report by Fox News.
Although ISIS has not yet claimed responsibility for the Turkish attack, most World authorities agree that ISIS is most likely responsible, as the style of the assault was similar to the March Brussels attack. Fox News has interviewed several U.S. government officials who agree that the attack fits the ISIS profile.The official explained that ISIS has a tendency to attack international targets like airports to maximize terror as well as economic impact. Ataturk Airport is one of the fastest-growing airports in the world, and in 2015, was deemed the 11th busiest airport with 61.8 million passengers, according to Airports Council International.
Turkish official recently told The Associated Press that a thorough review of both eyewitness statements as well as video security footage is currently underway to establish a more detailed timeline.
ISIS activity has been on the rise in Turkey, a NATO member and crucial partner in the worldwide U.S.-led coalition against ISIS. The increased frequency of attacks has definitely frightened tourists and has hurt the economy which is heavily dependent on tourism.
Since the attack, Turkey has dramatically increased security measures at all airports, as well as their land borders. The country has struggled to deal with the ISIS threat, despite increased monitoring of in-country Kurdish rebels and deportation of thousands of foreign fighters.
In light of the attack, several U.S. airports have also strengthened security measures. A terminal at New York’s JFK Airport was briefly evacuated Wednesday after someone spotted suspicious luggage, which was later deemed to pose no threat.
To add to the tension, CIA Director John Brennan testified to Congress this week, warning Americans this week that ISIS could attack inside the U.S., saying that the group has become more dangerous than ever, according to CNN reports. “Unfortunately, despite all our progress against ISIL on the battlefield and in the financial realm, our efforts have not reduced the group’s terrorism capability and global reach,” said Brennan. Brennan cautioned Congress that ISIS plans to send refugees to western nations to implement more attacks.