Istanbul bombing

Site f the Istanbul suicide bombing. (Ismail Coskun, IHA via AP)

After an attack by ISIS in Istanbul on Saturday that killed three Israelis and an Iranian and wounded over a dozen others, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent his condolences to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin. 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday sent a letter of condolence to Israel and the families of the three victims of the Istanbul bombing, addressing it to President Reuven Rivlin.

“I would like to convey my deepest condolences to the people of Israel and to the families of Israeli citizens who lost their lives in this treacherous attack which happened in Istanbul, where they were visiting our country to get better acquainted with our culture, and wish a speedy recovery to the injured,” Erdogan wrote Rivlin.

Erdogan called on the international community to unite against terrorism.

“With yesterday’s heinous attack, it has again been seen most clearly that it is an absolute necessity for the international community to conduct a joint, united and determined fight against terrorism, which targets the whole of humanity and fundamental human values and constitutes a crime against humanity,” Erdogan wrote.

The Saturday bombing, which killed four and wounded over a dozen tourists, is believed to be the work of an Islamic State (ISIS) suicide bomber.

In the meantime, Israel’s Foreign Ministry Director General Dore Gold flew to Istanbul on Sunday and met with his Turkish counterpart Feridun Sinirlioğlu, a former foreign minister, and Istanbul governor Vasip Şahin and thanked them both for their help.

A joint statement said Israel and Turkey stand together in the struggle against terror and facing regional challenges.

This was the first visit in five years by the foreign ministry’s director general to Turkey.

Israel and Turkey have been engaged in the past months in talks to re-establish full diplomatic relations following their suspension in 2010 following the Mavi Marmara incident.

The three Israeli victims, Simcha Damri, Avraham Goldman and Yonatan Suher were brought home by Israel’s Air Force on Sunday and will be buried on Monday afternoon in their respective hometowns.

By: Max Gelber, United with Israel