NY terror attack in Istanbul nightclub
During the New Year celebrations last night, a gunman stormed the well-known Reina nightclub in Istanbul killing 39 people and injuring a further 65. The attacks followed a series of statements in preceding weeks by Turkish officials and ultra-nationalist muslims denouncing Christmas and New Years Eve celebrations as evil and anti-Islamic. Mehmet Gormez of the Presidency of Religious Affairs, had referred to New Year celebrations as “illegitimate” and was critical of Muslims celebrating Christmas and New Years Eve. Furthermore mainstream newspapers and banners have been condemning those engaging in christmas celebrations, this even included a stunt in which a man dressed as Santa Clause was held at gun point. Such propaganda has further increased tensions and encouraged violence against minorities, particularly secular and Christian citizens.
Following the brutal attack at the Reina club last night, in significant contrast with their previous position, Turkish Government officials issued statements condemning the barbaric act. The gunman remains at large. Despite over a dozen terrorist attacks and the death of thousands of civilians at the hands of the terrorist groups and government military action in South East of Turkey, the AKP government has failed to take any preventative action to secure the safety of its citizens and no official has accepted responsibility or resigned following such atrocities.