Tragedy at Istanbul Church: Man Killed in ISIS Attack, No Further Casualties

Pope decries attack on Catholic Church in Istanbul

Tragedy at Istanbul Church: Man Killed in ISIS Attack, No Further Casualties

ISTANBUL, Turkey (Jan 29, 2024) - A man lost his life in a shooting at the Santa Maria Catholic Church in Istanbul's Sariyer district on Sunday. Authorities identified the victim as Tuncer Murat Cihan, a 52-year-old Turkish citizen. Two masked gunmen, one from Tajikistan and the other from Russia, were apprehended along with 51 others following the incident.

Details surrounding the attack remain under investigation, but authorities believe a jammed weapon prevented further casualties. CCTV footage reviewed by Reuters shows the perpetrators briefly waiting at the church's entrance before shooting Mr Cihan. Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu confirmed the Polish consul general was present inside the church with his family at the time, but he was unharmed.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack through a Telegram statement, citing it as a response to their leaders' calls targeting Jews and Christians. However, Mr Cihan's cousin denied any involvement in political or religious affairs, describing him as someone who "lived in his own world." A funeral ceremony was held for him at a local cemevi, a place of worship for the Alevi faith, of which Mr. Cihan was a member.

The tragic incident raises concerns about potential further attacks and heightened security measures are expected in Istanbul and across Turkey. While authorities continue their investigation, the focus remains on supporting the affected families and ensuring the safety of all citizens and places of worship.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024