Israeli Diplomat Killed by Car Bomb Blast
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) _ An Israeli diplomat was killed and three people wounded, one critically, in a car bombing Saturday, police said. Israel denounced the attack, the second against Jews in Turkey in a week.
Two claims of responsibility were reported by Turkish newspapers - one by the Islamic Jihad Organization and the other by the previously unknown Islamic Revenge Organization, believed to be associated with the Islamic Jihad.
The slain diplomat was identified as Ehud Sadan, 37, the security chief at the Israeli embassy. Israeli officials said Sadan was from Jerusalem and is survived by his wife and three daughters, but provided no further information.
″We express our shock and horror at this terrorist attack which took place only a very short time after a terrorist attack on the Jewish synagogue in Istanbul,″ Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Barukh Binah said in Jerusalem.
In that attack, last Sunday, a Jewish man was slightly injured when a hand grenade exploded in front of the Neve Shalom synagogue. The synagogue was also the scene of an attack by two gunmen in 1986 that claimed 22 Jewish lives.
The Iranian-backed Shiite Muslim guerrilla group Hezbollah was blamed for Sunday’s synagogue attack, which came after Hezbollah’s secretary-general, Sheik Abbas Musawi, was killed in an Israeli air strike in south Lebanon last month.
In Ankara, Premier Suleyman Demirel expressed his regrets over the diplomat’s death, and Turkey’s Foreign Ministry also issued a statement condemning the attack.
Sadan was attacked after he finished shopping at an open-air food market, which opens once a week in the affluent Cankaya district.
Turkey’s Anatolia news agency said the three wounded included a 9-year-old boy who had been helping park cars in return for small tips. It said one victim, in critical condition, could not be identified because of the extent of his wounds.
In Israel, army radio quoted a Turkish police official, Mustafa Aldan, as saying the diplomat ″turned the key and was crushed in the car.″
Five other vehicles parked near the Israeli diplomat’s car were heavily damaged. All the windows were shattered in three 13-story apartment buildings at the site.
″It was a terrible explosion. When I looked outside, I saw people in panic running away and heard a cry of a child,″ said Abdurrahman Aktas, a grocery owner whose store windows were broken by the blast.
Aktas said the diplomat’s body was lying in front of his car, apparently after being hurled through the windshield by the force of the blast.
Israeli terrorism expert Ariel Merari said on army radio that the attack method appeared similar to one used twice in the past year on Americans and Egyptians in Istanbul. Merari said it appeared that the attack was by pro- Iranian Shiites and likely was in retaliation for the death of Musawi.
Israeli diplomats have often been targeted for attacks abroad. In 1982, Shlomo Argov, Israel’s ambassador to Britain, was seriously wounded by gunfire.
Turkey and Egypt are the only Muslim countries that recognize Israel.