Priest Stabbed in Turkey
Ankara, Turkey, December 16, 2007 (Zenit.org).- An Italian priest was stabbed in the stomach at the end of Mass, the latest victim of violence against Christians in Turkey.
A police spokesman told the Reuters news agency that Capuchin Father Adriano Franchini, the superior of the Custody of Turkey, was expected to survive. Three people were arrested as suspects.
The stabbing occurred in the Bayrakli parish church, in Izmir.
Today's incident is another in a growing number of attacks against the tiny Christian minority in Turkey. Another Italian priest, Father Andrea Santoro, was killed in Trabzon in February, 2006. In January, a Christian journalist, Hrant Dink, was killed in Instanbul. And in April, three Christians were killed at a Bible publishing house in Malatya.
Turkey wants to be a member of the European Union, but many Church and secular leaders are asking better protection of the Christian minority before the request is granted. Only 0.2% of the nation is not Muslim.