Turkey - A police officer has been described as 'heroic' by the Turkish prime minister after he stopped a 'big atrocity' when Kurdish terrorists tried to blow up a courthouse in Izmir with a car bomb today.
Fethi Sekin refused to let the car inside the cordon outside the Justice Palace building and then chased after the terrorists when they abandoned the vehicle, which blew up seconds later. He was killed in a shootout with the terrorists.
Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said: 'Our heroic police officer martyred in this attack, Fethi Sekin, prevented a much bigger disaster happening, sacrificing his own life without a thought for it.'
The provincial governor, Erol Ayyildiz, blamed the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, for the car bombing and a large crowd assembled at the scene, chanting: 'God damn the PKK'.
The PKK is fighting for an independent homeland for the Kurdish people in the south east of Turkey.
The dramatic moment terrorists shot at Mr Sekin, 43, and another Turkish policemen in the street was caught on video.
An officer can be seen sprinting away from a row of parked cars before collapsing to the ground after been shot during a gunfight in Izmir, on Turkey's west coast.
Moments later, a second officer appears to fall to the pavement nearby after being targeted by an attacker. It is not clear which one is Mr Sekin.
Two men armed with machine guns, grenades and a rocket launcher were later killed while a third is on the run after a deadly car bomb outside a courthouse.
Mr Sekin and a courthouse worker died in the blast and five people were injured - some critically.
But Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Veysi Kaynak said it could have been much worse: 'Based on the preparation, the weapons, the bombs and ammunition seized, it is understood that a big atrocity was being planned.'
Social media in Turkey was swamped with messages about Mr Sekin.
Author Elif Şafak tweeted: 'Heartbreaking: terror attack in #Izmir. Police officer & father #FethiSekin prevented a massacre by sacrificing himself.'
Selami Haktan tweeted: '#FethiSekin is a real hero. He stopped VBIED (Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Device) entering courthouse, chased 3 terrorists. Achieved to kill one & die a martyr in the shootout.'
It comes a day after local police in the city arrested 20 ISIS suspects in the search for a gunman who went on the rampage murdering 39 revellers at an Istanbul club on New Year's Eve.
CCTV captured the moment the blast rocked the city. Images posted online have also emerged showing the bodies of two men lying on the ground.
Police are reportedly hunting a third suspect, described as wearing a black coat and a white beret.
Authorities say suspected Kurdish militants opened fire at police who stopped them at a checkpoint in the western city of Izmir before detonating their explosives-laden vehicle.
The governor, Mr Ayyildiz, said: 'A clash erupted after our police officers wanted to stop a vehicle at a police check point in front of Bayrakli courthouse. In this clash, terrorists detonated the car bomb while trying to escape.'
Report from : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/