ISTANBUL (TheBlaze/AP) -- Three explosions have rocked Istanbul's Ataturk airport, killing at least 36 people and wounding around 147 others, the Turkish justice minister said Tuesday.
Bekir Bozdag said that according to preliminary information, "a terrorist at the international terminal entrance first opened fire with a Kalashnikov and then blew himself up." Senior officials believe the attack was carried out by the Islamic State.
Video purportedly showing the moment of one of the blasts surfaced on social media not long after the incident.
Another official said two attackers — later confirmed by Turkish state press to be three attackers who arrived via taxi — detonated explosives at the entrance of the international terminal after police fired at them.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with government protocol, said he was citing information from the interior ministry. It wasn't immediately clear why his account of the number of attackers was different to the justice minister's.
The official said the attackers blew themselves up before entering the x-ray security check at the airport entrance.
Turkish airports have security checks at both at the entrance of terminal buildings and then later before entry to departure gates.
Roads around the airport were sealed off for regular traffic after the attack and several ambulances could be seen driving back and forth.
The private DHA news agency said the wounded, among them police officers, were being transferred to Bakirkoy State Hospital.
Video from inside the airport purportedly showed passengers ducking for cover and shouting "get down."
Turkey has suffered several bombings in recent months linked to Kurdish or Islamic State group militants.
The bombings included two in Istanbul targeting tourists - which the authorities have blamed on the Islamic State group.
The attacks have increased in scale and frequency, scaring off tourists and hurting the economy, which relies heavily on tourism revenues.
Istanbul's Ataturk Airport was the 11th busiest airport in the world last year, with 61.8 million passengers, according to Airports Council International. It is also one of the fastest-growing airports in the world, seeing 9.2 percent more passengers last year than in 2014.
The largest carrier at the airport is Turkish Airlines, which operates a major hub there. Low-cost Turkish carrier Onur Air is the second-largest airline there.