By Nadia Prupis / Common Dreams

Passengers embrace outside Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport following their evacuation after the attack. (Emrah Gurel / AP)

News outlets report that at least 28 people are confirmed dead and scores more wounded following a violent attack at the major international airport in Istanbul, Turkey, on Tuesday.

Two explosions hit Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport, according to Turkish officials.

The Guardian reports:

Vasip Sahin, the governor of Istanbul province told the NTV news channel that 28 people had died, and said that authorities believe three suicide bombers were involved, because there were three separate explosions.

Another Turkish official told the Guardian that the suspects blew themselves up outside the security checkpoint at the entry to the international terminal, after police opened fire on them.

A spokesperson for the Istanbul police said that “a bomb exploded at the airport and there are many casualties,” adding that the exact number is not yet known.

Earlier:

Witnesses reported hearing gunshots at Ataturk airport before the blasts. According to the BBC, the attackers were believed to have detonated explosives at the security checkpoint in front of the international terminal. Images and videos of the blast circulated on social media.

Turkish journalists reported that the government put a media gag order in place almost immediately.

It is not yet clear whether the attackers were affiliated with any organization. The U.S. Embassy in Turkey in April warned of heightened security threats to travelers.

In 2015, Ataturk airport became the third-busiest airport in the world, behind Charles de Gaulle in Paris and Heathrow in London.

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