ICC Note: The failed military coup in Turkey last week saw multiple cases of targeted violence against the Christians of Turkey. The nation is primarily Sunni Muslim and has an unfortunate history of Christian persecution. On July 15th, at least two churches reported attacks against them. The future of Christianity in Turkey is at risk following the events of the coup.
07/23/2016 Turkey (Christian Times): Christian churches in the predominantly Sunni Muslim country with a long history of Christian persecution became targets of violence as army coup threatened Turkey on July 15.
The Christian rights advocates group based in the Middle East, Middle East Concern (MEC), reported at least two cases of violence targeting Christian churches during Friday’s failed military coup. Each targeted church also brought back memories of past violence against Christians.
One of the attacks happened in Trabzon. A group of 10 people attacked Santa Maria Church with paving stones and hammers to smash the windows and attempted to break in until Muslims in the neighborhood stopped them and drove them away.
Canon Ian Sherwood of The Crimea Memorial Church in Istanbul said many Christians are fleeing the country for safety.
“I’m not optimistic about the plight of Christians in Turkey,” he told The Spectator. “Bear in mind we’ve had a Roman Catholic Bishop murdered, we’ve had clergy threatened, we’ve had one priest murdered 10 years ago. Any Christian leader, if they’re being honest, would say that some of what’s going on is quite alarming.”