4 detained over Istanbul building collapse

DHA Photo

Police arrested four suspects early Thursday as part of a probe into the Istanbul building collapse.

Turkish authorities on Thursday detained four suspects over the collapse of an apartment building in Istanbul that claimed the lives of 21 people.

The suspects held over the collapse in the residential district of Kartal on the Asian side of the city include project officer Suzan Çayır, technical implementation supervisor Uğur Mısırlıoğlu and building inspector Arzu Keleş Boran.

The suspects are being charged with "killing more than one person by negligence."

The eight-story block where 43 people were registered as living crumbled last week but the cause still remains unclear.

Authorities said that the top three floors of the building had been built illegally.

"It was built in 1992 as a five-story building but three more stories were added later illegally," Istanbul Governor Ali Yerlikaya said last week to the reporters.

The collapse fanned criticism of a government amnesty granted last year to people accused of illegal building -- a measure announced ahead of municipal elections this March.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said there were "many lessons to learn" from the collapse and that the government would take "steps in a determined way" after investigators complete their work.

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