Page 1, 28th November 2003

28th November 2003
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Page 1, 28th November 2003 — Church deplores terrorist outrages in Istanbul
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Church deplores terrorist outrages in Istanbul

BY CHRISTINA FARRELL

CHURCH LEADERS have condemned the "barbaric logic" of terrorism and called on the international community not to give in to terrorist threats, in the wake of the latest suicide attacks in Turkey which killed 30 and injured more than 400.

Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls said terrorism was a "crime against humanity" that kills innocent people and exacerbates the problems it purports to resolve.

In a statement, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop of Westminster, said he had learned of the terrorist atrocities with a "profound sense of sadness".

He said: "The thoughts and prayers of the whole Catholic community are with the fami lies of all the victims and the Turkish people at this dreadful time."

A Turkish Islamist terror group and al-Qaeda have both claimed responsibility for last Thursday's bombings, which killed British and Turkish workers at the British Consulate and HSBC Bank in Istanbul. British ConsulGeneral Roger Short was among the dead. The bomb

ings followed earlier suicide attacks on two synagogues in Turkey which resulted in the deaths of 23 people..

A Vatican official said the Istanbul atrocities required a just and united international response.

"These attacks are an invitation to the international community to not give in to terrorist blackmail and to unite forces to defeat this evil, as the Pope is asking," he said.

John Paul II has called for a global mobilisation against terrorism by men and women of good will to safeguard "the freedom of personal beliefs and convictions".

The Foreign Office has advised against non-essential travel to Istanbul.

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