Explosion on main boulevard of Turkey capital leaves 27 dead and at least 75 injured

WARNING: Graphic photos lower down in this story

, (AP) — A car bombing in ’s capital has killed at least 27 people and wounded around 75 others on Sunday, officials said.

The blast occurred on the city’s main boulevard, Ataturk Bulvari, close to Ankara’s main square, Kizilay. It happened adjacent to bus stops near a park.

The private NTV news channel said a car, believed to be laden with explosives, detonated close to a bus. Several vehicles then caught fire, it said. The area is close to government offices, including ministries.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu convened an emergency security meeting after the bombing, which also shattered the windows of shops that line Kizilay square.

, 28, said he was on a bus when the explosion occurred.

“We were thrown further back into the bus from the force of the explosion,” said Asik, who sustained injuries on his face and arm.

Defne Karadeniz/Getty ImagesDefne Karadeniz/Getty ImagesThe wreckage of a car and a bus is seen after an explosion in Ankara's central Kizilay district on March 13, 2016 in Ankara, Turkey.

Police sealed off the area and pushed onlookers and journalists back, warning there could be a second bomb. Forensic teams were examining the scene.

The bombing is the third in the city in five months and comes as Turkey is faced with an array of issues, including renewed fighting with the Kurdish rebels, threats from the Islamic State group and a Syrian refugee crisis.

About Suzan Fraser, The Associated Press