Photographer: OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images

Istanbul Rocked by Blast Near Besiktas Soccer Stadium

  • Explosion wounded about 20, interior minister says on NTV
  • Blast heard around city more than an hour after match ended

An explosion near Vodafone Arena in central Istanbul on Saturday night appeared to target riot police stationed there after a soccer match, according to local media.

The blast occurred around 10:30 p.m., more than an hour after the end of the match between Besiktas, the home team, and Bursaspor at the stadium, which has a capacity of over 40,000. About 20 people were injured, all of them police, NTV reported, citing Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu.

The blast could be heard across the city of about 15 million people, Turkey’s largest and its commercially and historically most important. Video footage from the blast showed the stadium, which overlooks the Bosphorus Strait, surrounded by police and ambulances.

(Corrects time of explosion in second paragraph.)
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