Photo Credit: Hana Levi Julian
A small, barely-noticed synagogue almost impossible to find, nestled among stores in a tiny alley in the Balat neighborhood of Istanbul.

At least three Israelis were killed and 11 others were wounded in a terrorist attack shortly after 11 am on Sabbath (Saturday) morning in Istanbul.

The terrorist and an Iranian citizen was also killed and 28 other people were injured on Istiklal Avenue in the central Taksim section of Turkey’s largest city, where tourist hotels and cafes are located.


Fourteen of the victims were foreign nationals, according to Turkish officials. A number of foreign consulates are located along the avenue where the attack took place. However, officials were speculating the terrorist may have detonated the bomb too early, since the area was quiet at that hour. It is also possible he was targeting a Jewish tour group in the area.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry confirmed that two Magen David Adom ambulance aircraft were leaving Istanbul to bring the wounded and deceased home to Israel.

Turkish Health Minister Mehmet Müezzinoglu said 39 people, including 14 foreign nationals and a child, were injured and seven of the victims in hospitals were in critical condition.

“We as a nation are unfortunately now face to face with a situation of unlimited, immeasurable acts that are inhumane, defy human values and are treacherous,” Müezzinoglu said.

In a later statement the Health Ministry said six Israeli, one German, one Icelander, one Iranian, two Irish citizens and one Dubaian were receiving treatment at hospitals.

Two of the deceased Israelis also hold dual US citizenship.

Turkish officials said Saturday night the attack may have been carried out by the ISIS terrorist organization, or by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) terrorist group.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.