On Monday, the Islamic State claimed responsibility for the New Year’s shooting at an Istanbul nightclub, saying the attack was carried out by “a hero soldier of the caliphate.”
In a statement, the Islamic State said the attack had been carried out “in continuation of the blessed operations that the Islamic State is conducting against Turkey, the protector of the cross.”
“A hero soldier of the caliphate attacked one of the most famous nightclubs, where Christians celebrated their pagan holiday,” read the statement. “They used hand grenades and a machine gun and transformed their celebration to mourning.”
Referring to Turkey’s role in the war in Syria, the statement warned that “the government of Turkey should know that the blood of Muslims, which it is targeting with its planes and its guns, will cause a fire in its home by God’s will.”
According to Fox News, the shooter responsible for killing 39 people and wounding another 70 came from a Central Asian nation and is likely to either be from Uzbekistan or Kyrgyzstan.
Turkish police announced Monday that they have arrested eight people in connection with the attack, but the gunman is not among them.
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Istanbul Terrorist Attack Kills 39, Injures 69