0 Contents 2 Background 2.6 Islam 2.6.14 Turkey

Priest Stabbed Christian Missionaries Murdered


Turkey: Christian Missionaries Horrifically Tortured Before Killings


Turkey 2006 Priest Stabbed To Death

Necati Aydin, Tilmann Geske and Ugur Yuksel


The three Christians who were martyred in Turkey last week were horribly tortured for three hours prior to being killed, Christian Today has learned, as details continue to emerge.

by Daniel Blake 2007-04-19 
Posted: Thursday, April 26, 2007, 12:05 (BST) sword of his mouth

The three Christians who were martyred in Turkey last week were horribly tortured for three hours prior to being killed, Christian Today has learned, as details continue to emerge.

According to the Washington-DC based human rights group International Christian Concern, the three were put through a horrific ordeal which included multiple stabbings before finally being killed.

An ICC statement tells: ?As difficult and sorrowful as it is to learn more, we believe that we must expose the truly hellish nature of this attack for what it is.?

On Easter Sunday, five of the killers had been to a service that one of the victims, Pastor Necati, had arranged in the city of Malatya. The men were known to the believers as ?seekers?.

These young men, one of whom is the son of a mayor in the Province of Malatya, are part of a tarikat, or a group of ?faithful believers? in Islam, ICC has learned.

?Tarikat membership is highly respected; it?s like a fraternity membership,? ICC has stated. ?In fact, it is said that no one can get into public office without membership in a tarikat.?

On the day of the killing, the young Muslim men had arranged to meet the Christians at 10 am to learn more about the Bible.

?They had gathered guns, breadknives, ropes and towels - they knew there would be a lot of blood - ready for their act,? ICC said.

ICC described the horrific ordeal in excruciating detail, which will only moderately be described in this report.

?They arrived, and reportedly, after Necati read a chapter from the Bible the assault began. The young men tied Ugur, Necati, and Tilman?s hands and feet to chairs as they videoed their work on their cellphones. What followed in the next three hours is beyond belief,? an ICC release has said.

ICC then continued to describe the nature of the torture, which included disembowelment, emasculation, and the slicing open of various orifices.

?Tilman was stabbed 156 times, Necati 99 times and Ugur?s stabs were too numerous to count. Finally, their throats were sliced from ear to ear, heads practically decapitated,? ICC reports.

The ICC description goes on: ?Meanwhile, another believer arrived at the office around 12.30pm. The door was locked from the inside, and his key would not work. He phoned and though it had connection on his end he did not hear the phone ringing inside.

?He called cell phones of his brothers and finally Ugur answered his phone. ?We are not at the office. Go to the hotel meeting. We are there. We will come there,? he said cryptically. As Ugur spoke he heard in the telephone?s background weeping and a strange snarling sound.

?He phoned the police, and the nearest officer arrived in about five minutes. He pounded on the door, ?Police, open up!? Initially the officer thought it was a domestic disturbance. At that point they heard another snarl and a gurgling moan.?

ICC continued: ?The police understood that sound as human suffering, prepared the clip in his gun and tried over and over again to burst through the door. One of the frightened assailants unlocked the door for the policeman, who entered to find a grisly scene."

The throats of Tilman, Necati and Ugur had been slit and although Ugur was still alive, he died soon after from his horrific injuries.

After Tillman?s wife learned of the brutal death of her husband she publicly forgave the killers repeating the words of Jesus Christ, ?They know not what they do.?

Jeff King, ICC President, stated, ?The contrast between the acts of the killers and the forgiveness of Tillman?s wife is glaring and in the end seems to be at the centre of this story for us.?

Three murdered at Turkish bible publishing house

Two Turkish Christian converts and a German man were killed yesterday in a publishing house that prints bibles, in the latest attack on religious minorities living in Turkey.

Security officials found the men with their hands and feet tied to chairs and their throats cut in the office of Zirve Publishing, in the south-eastern city of Malatya.

A fourth man was being treated for severe head injuries after he jumped from a third-floor balcony to escape, while another sustained stab wounds.

Officials said that four men had been taken into custody. Turkish media reported that the police arrested the attackers before they left the publisher's office, acting on a tip-off from victims' families who had been unable to reach the men by phone for days.

Ahmet Guvener, the pastor of a Protestant church in the nearby city of Diyarbakir and a friend of the victims, said he had talked to the men on Tuesday night. "They were at peace with the world. This news came as a total shock," he said.

Zirve's director, Hamza Ozant, who opened the Malatya office last year, said the men had been on the verge of asking for police protection, following threats which they had experienced.

The attack comes two months after a nationalist gunman killed the journalist Hrant Dink in a street in Istanbul. The 52-year-old was a native of Malatya, and a Turkish-Armenian. He had been editor-in-chief of the bilingual Turkish-Armenian newspaper Agos.

Malatya, the home town of Mehmet Ali Agca, who shot and wounded Pope John Paul II in 1981, is known as a nationalist city. Nationalists had protested outside the Zirve building following local news reports accusing them of proselytism.

In 2005 molotov cocktails thrown at the International Protestant church in Ankara caused ?5,000 damage. And last year an American missionary in the south-eastern city of Gaziantep was bound and gagged by two assailants claiming to be members of al-Qaida. Although they did not kill him, the attackers promised to come back and finish him off unless he and his family left Turkey immediately.


Three Killed at Bible Publishing Firm


Attackers in Turkey have murdered three employees of a Christian publishing company including one German. The victims had their throats cut. Christian priests have been attacked on several occasions in Turkey over the past year.

A suspect is detained by Turkish police following the killing of three employees of a Christian publishing house in Malatya, eastern Turkey.

A suspect is detained by Turkish police following the killing of three employees of a Christian publishing house in Malatya, eastern Turkey.

Attackers in eastern Turkey murdered three employees of a Bible publishing company, including one German, on Wednesday.

The victims had their hands and feet tied and their throats slit, reports said. A fourth person escaped by jumping out of a window and is being treated in hospital.

The CNN-Turk news channel reported that six suspects have been detained. It showed bodies being carried out of the building of the Zirve publishing house in the town of Malatya. The company publishes Bibles and other Christian literature.

The Zirve publishing house had been the site of previous protests by nationalists and the company's director Hamza Ozant told CNN-Turk that his employees had been threatened recently.

The government and other officials in Turkey have in the past criticized Christian missionary work in the country while the European Union, which Turkey hopes to join, has called for more freedom for the small Christian minority. The country is 99 percent Muslim, though officially secular. Some Turkish nationalists see Christian missionaries as enemies working to undermine Turkey's political and religious institutions.

Malatya is known as a hotbed of nationalists, and is the hometown of Mehmet Ali Agca, who shot Pope John Paul II in 1981. Police are investigating the possibility that an Islamic militant group, Turkish Hezbollah, could be involved in the attack.

Last year a priest was shot dead in the Black Sea province of Trabzon, which coincided with worldwide protests over cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. Two other priests were also attacked last year.

Earlier this year, Armenian-Turkish editor Hrant Dink was murdered by an ultranationalist, which prompted extra security measures to be taken for writers and journalists. Dink was also from Malatya.


Christian Martyrs in Turkey

On April 19, 2007 Compass Direct News reported that five young Muslim Turks entered a Christian publishing office in the southeastern province of Malatya and tortured and killed the three Christians present.  This is their story.

* * *
Necati and Semse Aydin(1)It had been a long day at work, and Necati Aydin was washing up so that he could leave the publishing office and return home to his wife and two kids.  He turned the sink faucet on and let the warm water run over his ink stained hands, the black ink dripping off his fingers.

The bell on the front door of the shop signaled that a customer had entered the office.  Necati turned off the faucet, quickly dried off his hands, and walked up to the front counter.  Five men walked through the door, and Necati noticed that many of them were carrying large kitchen knives.  He shifted uneasily.

?Can I help you?? he said as confidently as his shaking voice would allow.

A few miles up the street from the publishing house, Semse, Necati?s wife, was getting ready to start dinner.  Elisa and Ester were playing together?if the teasing and arguing between a six year old boy and his five year old sister can be called playing.  Semse did not bother to stop them.  Necati would be home soon, and every time he walked through the door, the two children would run to greet him, their momentary squabbles forgotten as their father pulled them both into a giant hug.

?Yes, you can help me,? snarled one of the men.  ?You can curse your Jesus!?  On the word ?Jesus? he stabbed his knife into the counter top where Necati?s hand had been a few moments before.

As the knife crashed into the counter, Tilmann Geske and Ugur Yuksel, the two other believers still in the publishing office, came to see what was happening.  Necati tried to signal them to stay back, but they did not see his warning.

?What is going on out here?? said Tillmann, his hands carefully holding a stack of paper from the printer. ?Why?? Tilmann?s voice dropped off when he saw the knives the men were holding and the looks of hatred on their faces.

Susanne Geske looked at Lukas with a mixture of annoyance and amusement.  The ten year old boy had copied out pages and pages of the book of Psalms?all over the blank ?Thank You? cards that Susanne had intended to send to their mission supporters.

?Yes, you?re right,? she said patiently. ?It does look a lot like Daddy?s printing, but how about we go find some different paper to write the verses on??

Susanne chuckled to herself as she helped Lukas meticulously stack his cards.  He was certainly his Tilmann?s son.

On a signal from their leader, the five intruders charged at Necati, Tilmann, and Ugur.  Ugur, the youngest of the three men, managed to quickly jump backwards out of the reach.  Tilman was hit over the head before he could drop his stack of paper to defend himself, and Necati was grappling with four of the men.  Ugur ran towards Necati to help him, but found himself flat on his face when the handle of one of the knives thudded into the back of his skull.Three Martyrs

Although Necati struggled for quite some time, the five men were eventually able to over-power him and then tied the three men to chairs that were in the office.  Ugur tried to keep the back of his head from resting against the chair; he could already feel a large lump swelling on the base of his neck where he had been hit.

Cemile* fingered her ring excitedly as she stared into her closet trying to decide what to wear.  That night, her fianc鬦nbsp;Ugur Yuksel, would be taking her out for a walk and dinner to discuss their wedding plans.  Ugur had not understood why they needed to have so many detailed worked out three and a half months before the wedding, but Cemile had assured him that is was important.  And even if they did not discuss the plans, just spending time with Ugur would be the highlight of her day.

Reaching into the closet, Cemile picked out a spring yellow dress.  She had bought the dress two weeks ago because she knew that yellow was Ugur?s favorite color.  She held the dress up to herself, spun around once, and decided it would be perfect for that night.

Necati gritted his teeth to keep himself from audibly crying out.  One after another, each of his fingers were cut and the blood allowed to freely flow onto the floor. 

Next the intruders began taunting the men to speak in defense of their faith?and when they did, stabbing their legs, arms, and chest.

?Who is this Jesus that you believe in??

?He is the Son of G?ah!?  Necati?s wrist was sliced open, and his blood quickly began to drain from his body.
Your Response
Support those who are grieving and still face persecution

The wives of these three martyrs have chosen to remain in the country of Turkey in spite of continued persecution. Open Doors has organized a letter writing campaign and other support for these families.  Please help us in this effort.

Support the vital ministry of Open Doors!

With his remaining strength Necati called out as loudly as he could, ?Police!  Help, h?.? His cry was cut off as one of the men turned on him and sliced through his throat.

When the sound of steps was heard on the stairs in the building, two of the men put their knives on Ugur and Tilmann?s throats.  Tillman raised his hands heavenwards and began to pray.  Ugur, weeping, could say nothing but ?Mesih, Mesih [Messiah].?

In a second, both men were silenced; their windpipes completely severed.
That night when Ester and Elisa went running to the door to hug their father, they were greeted by a member of the Turkish police.  The man was unable to look Semse in the eye as he told her that her husband, Necati, had been killed.

For much of the evening Susanne and Luke copied out verses?on colored construction paper.  But Tilmann never came home to see the verses.

Cemile received a phone call.  Expecting to hear Ugur voice, she picked it up excitedly, ?Hello!  Oh no. The?the hospital? Yes of course, I?ll?I?ll come down there??

By the time Cemile arrived at the hospital, Ugur had already passed away.

These men were victims in the eyes of their attackers, but today they are heroes and martyrs in the eyes of believer worldwide.

*Name changed to protect identity

Return to Christian Martyrs >>