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Istanbul attack: CIA warns of similar attacks

The CIA says the Islamic State may be responsible for the suicide bombings at Atatürk Airport.

FILE: A Turkish police officer directs a passenger at Ataturk airport in Istanbul 28 June 2016 after two explosions followed by gunfire hit Turkey's biggest airport. Picture: Ozan Kose/AFP.

ISTANBUL - The United States (US) has warned that the Islamic State is likely to carry out similar attacks to those in Turkey, in America.

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) director John Owen Brennan says the militant group may be responsible for the suicide bombings at Istanbul's Atatürk Airport on Tuesday, which claimed the lives of 42 people and wounded dozens more.

The Islamic State has so far not taken credit for the Turkish airport attack, but Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters shortly after the Istanbul bombings that the Islamic State was likely to be the culprit.

Three suicide bombers stormed the airport and opened fire on Tuesday, and then blew themselves up.

WATCH: A witness's account of Istanbul triple suicide bomb attack

At the same time, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on the international community to make the attack in Istanbul a turning pointing in the global fight against terrorism.

The attack at the entrance of Atatürk Airport is the deadliest in a string of attacks that have shaken the country this year.

Home-grown Turkish Islamic State members were blamed for the attack.

Turkey declared a day of national mourning after the attack, which also has crippled its tourism industry as the summer holidays get into full swing.

Officials say the dead include Turks, Saudi Arabians, Iraqis, an Iranian national, a Chinese national, a Jordanian, a Tunisian, an Uzbek and a Ukrainian.

Among the Turks were policemen, airport staff, tour guides and a taxi driver.

Police visibility is extremely high since the bombings and warnings have been issued about locations that might be targeted by the group in future.

Turkey is part of a US-led military coalition against Islamic State and home to around 3 million refugees from the five-year civil war in neighbouring Syria.

Islamic State has established a self-declared caliphate on swathes of both Syria and Iraq and declared war on all non-Muslims and all Muslims who do not accept its ultra-hardline vision of Sunni Islam. It has claimed responsibility for similar bombing and gun attacks in Belgium and France in the past year.

Erdogan, whose government has taken steps this week to improve relations with Israel and Russia in part to strengthen its hand in fighting against militants, said the attack should serve as a turning point in the global battle against terrorism, which he said had "no regard for faith or values".

US President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned the attack in separate phone calls with Erdogan, his office said.

Obama, at a North American summit in Ottawa, Canada, said the United States has offered all assistance available to Turkey and pledged to work with Ankara to fight terrorism.

"We're still learning all the facts, but we know this is part of our broader shared fight against terrorist networks," he told a news conference.

Additional reporting by Reuters.