MOSCOW (AP) — Authorities in the former Soviet republic of Georgia have identified one of the gunmen killed in a recent counterterrorism operation as a suspect behind a suicide bombing in Turkey last year.
The Georgian State Security Service said in a statement on Friday that it has identified the gunmen who blew himself up as Akhmed Chatayev.
Turkish officials have named Chatayev, a Chechen extremist known to be a top lieutenant in the Islamic State militant group, as a possible organizer of the suicide bombing at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport which killed 45 people.
One officer and three gunmen died in a 20-hour counterterrorism operation in Georgia's capital Tbilisi last month.
Georgian authorities said they are investigating to see how the men had crossed the border into Georgia.