Christian Teenager Targeted in Turkey

07/15/2019 Turkey (International Christian Concern) – Hristiyan Haber reports a hate attack in Gebze, Turkey, where two unidentified individuals targeted a 19-year-old teenager for wearing a cross necklace.

The teenager attends church in Uskudar and is routinely seen walking to the train station every Sunday. He was approached by the two individuals while walking. They had noticed the cross necklace, approached him, and then pulled the cross off of the chain. They asked him if he understood what he was wearing, and then slapped him when the teenager affirmed his Christian faith. The teenager did not file a legal compliant.

Hate speech and attacks are increasingly a common occurrence in Turkey. Although Turkey is home to most of the New Testament, Christians today are less than 0.2% of the population because of Ottoman-era persecution. Turkey now identifies as secular, but both secularism and Islamism continue to be strong drivers of persecution incidents.

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