Australian government condemns Istanbul airport attack

2016-06-29 01:39:25 GMT2016-06-29 09:39:25(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

CANBERRA, June 29 (Xinhua) -- The Australian government has on Wednesday condemned the deadly attack carried out at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport overnight, which has left at least 36 dead and injured many others.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop extended Australia's sympathies to Turkey following the attack which ripped through the busy airport, and said the government was desperately trying to determine if any Australians were in the area at the time of the bombings.

"The Australian government condemns what appears to be a coordinated terror attack on the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey on June 28. Our thoughts and sympathies are with the people of Turkey," Bishop said in a statement on Wednesday.

"I understand the Turkish authorities have secured the area of the attack and have advised that Ataturk Airport will be closed for up to 48 hours."

Turkey is a popular holiday spot for Australians seeking to escape the winter chill down under, and Bishop said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT) was "urgently" trying to locate any Australians who might have been caught up in the bombings.

The foreign minister has urged Australians to reconsider their need for travel to Turkey, while she instructed Australians in Turkey to be alert in any crowded area.