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Merkel, Erdogan discuss anti-terror cooperation in wake of attack

German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed her condolences to Turkish President Recep Erdogan on Sunday following deadly bombings in Istanbul. Merkel and Erdogan vowed to boost joint efforts at combating terrorism.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other German leaders expressed their outrage after bombings in Istanbul killed 38 people.

Merkel called Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to express her condolences. "The chancellor asked the president to convey her sympathies to the victims' loved ones and offered help, if needed, to care for those who were injured," said German chancellor spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer in a statement.

She also said there was more to be done to fight terrorism. "The chancellor and the president agreed to intensify their cooperation in fighting terrorism," said Demmer.

German President Joachim Gauck was "shocked" and shared his sympathies with Turkey. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said, "we strongly condemn these terrorist attacks and mourn together with our Turkish partners."

Terrorism in Germany and Turkey 

Both Germany and Turkey have experienced terrorist attacks on their soil in 2016. Turkey has faced attacks from Islamic and Kurdish militants in 2016. Germany experienced a week of terrorist violence, including one successful and one thwarted attack from those associated with the so-called Islamic State, in July.

Erdogan and Merkel have vowed to fight terrorism in their homelands. Erdogan said he would "fight the scourge of terrorism right to the end" after Saturday's bombings. German security forces reported they stopped several terrorist plots in recent months following the violence in July.

kbd/kl (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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Turkey to fight terror 'to the end'

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