France, attack on a church in Nice

Turkey “harshly” condemns the attack in Nice, France

A knife-wielding attacker broke into a Nice church and killed three people, beheading one, amid new controversy over Islam cartoons.

Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned this Thursday in a statement the terrible attack in the city of Nice, in southern France, in which an individual armed with a knife broke into a church and killed three people – a religious and two parishioners – beheading one of them, when the country was still recovering after the beheading of a teacher who put a cartoon on Muhammad as an example of freedom of expression.

We strongly condemn the attack committed today inside the church of Notre-Dame in Nice,” said the statement, which offered condolences to the families of the victims and Turkey’s solidarity with the French people in the face of violence and terrorism. “There is no excuse that legitimises violence and taking someone’s life. It is clear that those who commit such acts of violence in a sacred place have no respect for any humanitarian, religious or moral value,” the text added.

On his side, Turkish President Tayyip Erdoğan‘s spokesman, Ibrahim Kalın, also condemned the “atrocious” attack in Nice, expressing his condolences to the people of France. “Terrorism has no religion, language or color. We will fight with determination and solidarity against all forms of terrorism and extremism,” Kalın underlined, recalling that Turkey has for years fought terrorism on various fronts.

French police managed to capture the perpetrator of the attack in Nice, who allegedly repeatedly shouted “Allahu Akbar” (God is the Greatest) and is believed to have acted alone. However, shortly after, the French police shot and killed another man in Avignon – also in the south of France – who had threatened several passersby with a knife. The attacks coincide with the publication in Charlie Hebdo magazine of a cartoon ridiculing the president of Turkey and Islam that has aroused the ire of the Muslim world.