Witness accounts are pouring in following the suicide bombings at Istanbul’s international airport that left at least 36 dead on Tuesday.
The witnesses described a scene of terror and chaos as the attackers detonated their explosives and opened fire.
“There was blood and injured passengers everywhere,” one witness from Iran told BuzzFeed:
“We heard gunshots when we were checking in. I grabbed my family and ran,” Jim Hyong Lee of South Korea told The Telegraph. “Someone waved us into the prayer room and hid us there until the police came.”
One traveller at the airport, Laurence Cameron, told CNN he had just gotten off an aeroplane to find a scene similar to “a disaster movie.”
“It was just a massive crowd of screaming people. Some were falling over themselves. A poor chap in a wheelchair was just left, and everyone just rushed to the back of the building, and then people ran the other way and no one really seemed to know what was going on,” he told CNN.
“It looked like someone had gone around with a bulldozer and just shredded the entire entrance to the terminal.”
Another witness told CNN that authorities herded her and about 30 other people into a women’s prayer room. She said when they were released into the main terminal hall, she saw bloody boot marks on the floor.
“There was a lot of blood,” she told CNN. “There was so much glass on the floor they were scuffing it aside so we didn’t slip.”
Judy Favish described a similar scene in the main hall.
“Chaos and blood and people running around and anxious and worried. It was just horrible,” witness Judy Favish told CBS News.
She said authorities huddled her and other travellers in a basement cafeteria for more than two hours after the explosions. Some of the people she was with had been shot and were bleeding, she said.
“There were a couple of people who had really bad panic attacks, and were literally convulsing they were so anxious,” she told CBS News. “And then another woman, I think she must have had a heart attack, again from anxiety.”