The shocking moment a suspected suicide bomber killed at least five people in one of Turkey's busiest streets has been captured on camera. A violent blast can be seen going off near a group of pedestrians in Istanbul's central Istiklal Avenue in security camera footage said to be from the scene that has been posted online.
People are sent tumbling to the ground by the burst of fire that explodes in the middle of the street. As the subsequent black smoke rises several victims are seen lying on the pavement outside a store.
The city's governor Vasip Şahin said five people were killed in what his office said was a suspected suicide attack. The health ministry added 14 foreigners were among the 36 wounded. The Israeli foreign office confirmed three of its nationals were killed in the bombing.
With its many shops, cafes and restaurants Istiklal Avenue is one of Istanbul most famous landmarks and is normally crowded with people on Saturdays. Numerous countries have their consulate buildings in the area.
The attack could have seen a worst toll, as it struck the street around 11am local time when the area was still relatively quiet. The street that is at its busiest in the afternoon.
"It was one loud explosion," said Muhammed Fatur, a Syrian who works at a butcher shop near the scene of Saturday's explosion. "Police came to the scene and sealed off the area."
There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Turkey has come under attack both from Islamist and Kurdish militants in recent months.
British singer Skin, lead vocalist of Skunk Anansie, was staying at a nearby hotel when the blast went off. "Massive bomb blast outside our hotel," she wrote on social media. "Many people injured, horrific scenes, building shook like paper. We are OK, very shaken, city is in lockdown, plain clothes police with guns everywhere, scary times."
Turkey facing series of attacks
The explosion in Istanbul came as Turks are on the edge following a string of attacks across the country. At least 37 people were killed and 125 others injured in a suicide bombing in central Ankara on 13 March.
Another 28 people were left dead by another bombing in the same area of the Turkish capital in February. Both attacks have been claimed by a splinter Kurdish militant group known as the Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK).