Armenian church in Istanbul trashed by nationalists

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(Photo: Cumhuriyet)

The Surp Takavor Armenian Church in the Kadıköy district of Istanbul was the victim of a nationalist attack overnight, Cumhuriyet reported.

According to the report, graffiti reading “This country belongs to us” was scrawled on the exterior wall of the church, while garbage was dumped at the entrance of the church.

Condemning the racist attack on Twitter, the Kadıköy Municipality said it had immediately cleaned up the garbage.

Religious and ethnic minorities have increasingly been targets of hate speech and racist attacks in Turkey.

In September, Armenians who were leaving the Narlı Kapı Church in İstanbul on Sunday were stoned by a group of children who chanted “Death to you.”

Racist graffiti that read “May the Turkish race live” was scrawled on the courtyard wall of an Armenian school in İstanbul last September.

More anti-Armenian graffiti that said “Suffering to Armenians” was painted on the wall of the same school on the ninth anniversary of the murder of Turkish Armenian journalist Hrant Dink.

An identical message also appeared the wall of the Surp Haç Ermeni High School in the Bağlarbaşı neighborhood of İstanbul. “Suffering to Armenians,” the message read.

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