Monday, December 19, 2016
Russia’s ambassador to Turkey was badly injured by a gunman Monday during the opening of an art exhibit in the capital of Ankara – an attack believed to be tied to radical Islamists, according to reports.
Andrey Karlov, who was shot while delivering a speech at the event, was in critical condition, CNN Türk reported.
The shooter was believed to be still inside the building.
Three other people also were wounded, Agence France-Presse reported, citing NTV and CNN-Turk TV stations.
A reporter for Turkey’s Hurriyet Daily News, who was at the scene during the attack, said attendants at the exhibit fled for their lives after the attacker fired into the air.
The attacker then targeted Karlov at the Cagdas Sanatlar Merkezi, a major art exhibition hall in the Cankaya district of Ankara, reporter Haşim Kılıç said.
Special forces surrounded the building amid the sound of gunfire, witnessed told the paper.
Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu rushed to the scene, an area where most foreign embassies are located, including Russia’s mission.
The attack came after days of protests in Turkey over Russia’s role in Syria, although Moscow and Ankara are cooperating to evacuate citizens from war-torn Aleppo.
Pictures published by Hurriyet show at least two men in suits lying on the ground while another man brandishes a gun.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu plans to travel to Moscow on Tuesday for talks on Syria with his Russian and Iranian counterparts, Hurriyet reported.
With Post Wires