We Prayed For Paris — But What About Ankara?


When masked gunmen opened fire on the Paris offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people, the world responded with “Je Suis Charlie.” And in the wake of a series of coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris in November that killed 130 and injured hundreds, people worldwide united around #PrayForParis .

“You were Charlie, you were Paris. Will you be Ankara?” James Taylor , a 23-year-old resident of the Turkish capital, asked in an emotional Facebook post on Sunday. Taylor raised his question hours after a deadly car bomb rattled the city of 4.5 million, killing 37 people and injuring dozens. The Ankara attack “is the equivalent of a bomb going off outside Debenhams on the Drapery in Northampton, or on New street in Birmingham, or Piccadilly Circus in London,” Taylor wrote. Taylor asked readers to imagine being there — “the roads you cross being obliterated” — and to think about the victims being “people you see every day on your way to work, people just like you and I, normal, happy people.”

“These people are no different. They just happen to be Turkish,” Taylor wrote. “Contrary to what many people think, Turkey is not the Middle East. Ankara is not a war zone, it is a normal modern bustling city, just like any other European capital, and Kizilay is the absolute heart, the centre.” Sunday’s blast, which could be heard more than a mile away, is the second large attack in the administrative heart of the city in less than a month, Reuters reports. In February,28 people were Full story on huffingtonpost.com