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During a Sunday service at the Italian Santa Maria Catholic Church in Istanbul, two masked gunmen fatally shot one individual, as confirmed by Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya. The attack, which occurred around 0840 GMT in the Sariyer district, has been condemned by the Turkish government.

Istanbul Governor Davut Gul, speaking to reporters at the scene, identified the victim as a Turkish national and clarified that no one else was injured in the incident. He emphasized that the gunmen exclusively targeted this one individual. The reason behind the attack and the motive for targeting the victim remains unclear at this stage.

The incident’s aftermath was marked by heightened police presence and emergency services at the church. Footage from the site showed several police cars and an ambulance stationed outside the church premises.

In response to the shooting, President Tayyip Erdogan reached out to express his condolences. He called the church’s priest, a local administrator from his ruling party, and the Polish consul general in Istanbul.

Additionally, Pope Francis conveyed his condolences over the attack following his weekly Angelus prayer, expressing solidarity with the affected community. “I express my closeness to the community of Saint Mary Draperis Church in Istanbul that suffered an armed attack during mass that caused one death,” he stated.


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