Turkey: Synagogue attacks revisited

Jews and Muslims commemorate three years since suicide bombings outside Istanbul synagogues killed 58 people.

turkey rabbi 298.88 ap (photo credit: AP)
turkey rabbi 298.88 ap
(photo credit: AP)
Dozens of Turkish Jews and Muslims cried and recited prayers of mourning Wednesday outside two synagogues to commemorate the third anniversary of two suicide bomb attacks blamed on a Turkish al-Qaida cell. Local officials, religious leaders and family and friends, holding framed photos of victims and the shattered synagogues after the explosions, laid red carnations on the streets outside the rebuilt Neve Shalom and Beth Israel synagogues in solemn ceremonies in Istanbul. The synagogues were targeted on Nov. 15, 2003 and similar attacks on the British Consulate and the local headquarters of HSBC bank followed just five days later. A total of 58 people died, along with four suicide bombers. The walls of both synagogues were fortified against bomb attacks following the explosions, police said. More than 70 suspected al-Qaida militants are currently on trial for their alleged roles in the truck bombings, though suspected ringleaders have fled the country and some reportedly died in Iraq while fighting US forces, according to police.