Bomb scare intimidates another church in Turkey

Trabzon church in a 2007 photo (World Watch Monitor)
Turkish police were called to Trabzon’s Santa Maria Catholic Church on Sunday morning (4 February) to examine a smouldering device spotted in the garden by alarmed church staff. After discovering a partially burned homemade pipe bomb, which had failed to explode, local authorities promptly checked the church’s security camera footage. . . . Read More

Historic Armenian Cathedral desecrated in southeast Turkey

Historic Armenian Cathedral desecrated in southeast Turkey
Eighteen months after the Turkish government seized control of the largest Armenian cathedral in the Middle East, secretly taken photographs inside Diyarbakir’s Surp Giragos Armenian Apostolic Church reveal considerable damage to the sanctuary and walls of the now desecrated church in southeast Turkey. Published by The Armenian Weekly, the exclusive . . . Read More

Turkey: churches targeted during attempted coup

Turkey: churches targeted during attempted coup
Santa Maria Catholic Church in Trabzon, Turkey, in a 2007 photo.World Watch Monitor   Two churches in cities in eastern Turkey infamous as the sites of historic killings of Christians were vandalised during the attempted coup on 15 July, reports Middle East Concern. One of the attacks took place in . . . Read More

Turkey seizes six churches as state property in volatile southeast

Turkey seizes six churches as state property in volatile southeast
The 1,700-year-old Virgin Mary Syriac Orthodox Church in Diyarbakir was one of the churches seized.World Watch Monitor   After 10 months of urban conflict in Turkey’s war-torn southeast, the government has expropriated huge sections of property, apparently to rebuild and restore the historical centre of the region’s largest city, Diyarbakir. . . . Read More

Fierce battles in southeast Turkey hedge in Christians

Fierce battles in southeast Turkey hedge in Christians
The 1,700-year-old Virgin Mary Syriac Orthodox Church, Diyarbakir, Turkey has been damaged in fighting between government forces and Kurdish separatists.World Watch Monitor   One of the oldest churches in the world sustained damage last week in the intensified fighting between the Turkish government and Kurdish separatists. Rocket-propelled grenades destroyed a . . . Read More

Syriac priest wrestles with Turkey’s ethnic tensions

Syriac priest wrestles with Turkey’s ethnic tensions
In the courtyard of the 1,700-year-old church over which he presides, Fr. Yusuf Akbulut beams with pride. He points out that the excellent stone and woodwork is a result of the craftsmanship of his ethnic group, the Syriac Christians of Turkey. “The Syriacs were always the goldsmiths, metal workers, stone . . . Read More