ISIS Claims Responsibility for Istanbul Nightclub Attack

The Islamic State issued a rare claim of responsibility on Monday for an attack in Turkey, saying in a statement that the shooting early on New Year’s Day at an Istanbul nightclub that killed at least 39 people was carried out by “a hero soldier of the caliphate.”

The authorities are still searching for the gunman, who killed a police officer guarding the club before going on a shooting rampage with a rapid-fire rifle at the Reina nightclub, but the state news media reported that eight suspects had been detained in connection with the attack.

In the statement, the militant group said that 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 from the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL. “They used hand grenades and a machine gun and transformed their celebration to mourning.”

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