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Turkish Jewish Community condemns attack by ultranationalists

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The Turkish Jewish Community has released a statement condemning an attack on a synagogue in İstanbul on Thursday night by a group of ultranationalists protesting Israel’s security measures at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the t24 news website reported on Friday.

In response to the attack by ultranationalists affiliated with the Alperen Hearths, an offshoot of the Turkish nationalist movement called the Grey Wolves (Ülkü Ocakları), the Turkish Jewish Community issued a statement that said: “We condemn the provocative strike in front of our Neve Shalom synagogue tonight and are asking the relevant authorities to take action.”

The ultranationalist group gathered in front of Neve Shalom in İstanbul on Thursday night and kicked the synagogue’s gates while throwing stones in protest of Israel’s security measures at the Temple Mount.

The Israeli government had installed some metal detectors at the holy compound after assailants killed two Israeli police officers last weekend. The Muslim religious body that has authority over the site announced that the metal detectors were an attempt to change the status quo and called on worshipers not to enter the site. Since then, violent clashes between Israeli soldiers and Muslim protestors have been going on at the compound.

The nationalist group said in a statement read outside the Neve Shalom synagogue that Israel was a “terror state” seeking to block freedom of worship to Muslims.

“If you prevent our freedom of worship there, then we will prevent your freedom of worship here,” said the statement, read by the group’s local chairman, Kürşat Mican.

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