World leaders condemn wedding attack in southeastern Turkey

Following the deadly attack on a wedding ceremony in the southeastern Turkish city of Gaziantep on Saturday night, condolences and messages of support have poured in from around the world.

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

People hold a coffin during the funeral of the victims of an attack during a wedding party that left 50 dead in Gaziantep in southeastern Turkey near the Syrian border on August 21, 2016.

Leaders from around the world condemned the terrorist attack on a wedding ceremony in Gaziantep, southeastern Turkey which took place late on Saturday, leaving 50 people dead and 100 others injured. 

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack. 

The Foreign Ministry of Turkey's neighbour Greece denounced the attack on Twitter:

US Ambassador in Ankara John Bass also condemned the "barbaric attack" in a statement saying, "We stand by our ally Turkey and pledge to continue to work closely together to defeat the common threat of terrorism."

Referring to other recent attacks in Turkey's east and southeast, British Ambassador to Turkey Richard Moore said in a Twitter post: 

French President Francois Hollande said in a statement that he "strongly condemns the despicable terrorist attack."

"France extends to the authorities and people of Turkey its condolences and sympathy... It stands with all who fight against the scourge of terrorism," he added.

Relatives grieve at a hospital August 20, 2016 in Gaziantep following a late night militant attack on a wedding party in southeastern Turkey. (AFP)

Speaking to Anadolu Agency on Sunday, Sweden's Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom also "vehemently condemned" the attack. adding, "we have all kinds of cooperation for the common fight against terrorism with Turkey."

Pope Francis offered prayers for the attack''s victims, according to official Vatican Radio. 

"Let us pray for the victims and the injured and for the gift of peace for all," the pope said on Sunday from St. Peter''s Square. 

Outrage at attack, support for Turkey

The president of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), Mustafa Akinci, denounced the attack in a statemnt expressing his country's support for and solidarity with Turkey. 

"Terrorist violence has manifested itself this time in the atmosphere of a wedding in Gaziantep. I condemn this terrorist attack."

Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev sent a letter of condolence to his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan stating his sorrow at the attack. 

People stand near the site of the explosion behind a police cordon following a late night attack on a wedding party that left 50 dead in Gaziantep in southeastern Turkey near the Syrian border on August 21, 2016. (AFP)

"We are extremely outraged by this horrible tragedy and other terror acts treacherously committed in your country, and consider it important and necessary to carry out a joint, consistent, and resolute struggle against terrorism and all its manifestations," he said. 

Qatar’s Foreign Ministry also denounced the attack, underlining Qatari support for Turkey's efforts in maintaining stability and security. 

Pakistan strongly reaffirmed its solidarity with the Turkish Government and people. 

"The government and people of Pakistan are deeply anguished and saddened by the news of the latest terrorist attack in Turkey, targeting a wedding ceremony in the southeastern province of Gaziantep," the Pakistani Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

A picture taken in Gaziantep in southeastern Turkey near the Syrian border on August 21, 2016 shows debris in the explosion scene following a late night attack on a wedding party that left at least 30 dead. (AFP)

Bahrain and Jordan also condemned the attack. 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday said, "Those who cannot overcome Turkey and try to provoke people by exploiting ethnic and sectarian sensitivities will not prevail." 

"I want to underline one more time, for our country and nation, that there is no difference between FETO, the perpetrator of the July 15 armed coup attempt and the 240 citizens we lost that night, the PKK, the killer of 70 of our security forces – soldiers, police, and village guards – in just the last month, and DAESH, the possible perpetrator of the Gaziantep attack," he added.

TRTWorld, AA