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Fake bomber arrested near Turkish prime minister's office

A 'mentally unstable' man triggered a security scare in Ankara when he approached the office of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan carrying a fake bomb.

Fake bomb Turkey prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan Nov 21 2013Enlarge
Security officials close a road leading to Turkish Prime Minister's office shortly after police subdued a man who was carrying a fake bomb in Ankara on November 21, 2031. (ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images)

A "mentally unstable" man carrying a fake bomb was restrained and arrested on Thursday after attempting to enter Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's office, officials said.

Security guards tackled the man, identified by police as 52-year-old Tugrul Bayir, when he approached the prime minister's office in the capital, Ankara, a witness told Agence France-Presse. 

"This individual was carrying a device resembling a bomb but in fact it was not one," Interior Minister Muammer Guler told reporters, describing the suspect as "mentally unstable."

The eyewitness told AFP the man was wearing a corset around his waist and carrying some type of cement with cables attached, as well as a black box.

It was initially reported that the suspect was a suicide bomber and had been shot, but witnesses later said that police had fired only warning shots into the air.

The man had called police five minutes before the incident to tell them that he planned to detonate a bomb at the prime minister's office, the interior minister said

Bayir was taken to a police station for questioning. 

Erdogan was not in his office at the time of the events.

Agence France-Presse contributed to this report.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/turkey/131121/suspected-suicide-bomber-subdued-near-turkish-leader-erdo