‘Santa Claus’ Shooter Slaughters AT LEAST 39 Guests In New Year’s Eve Night Club
A gunman, according to media reports, dressed in a Santa costume slaughtered at least 39 people, including 16 foreigners, at a famous nightclub in Istanbul during New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Armed with a rifle-like weapon, the shooter took a shot and struck a police officer before storming the elite Reina club in the Ortakoy area of the city at about 1.45 am.
Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin commented on the situation, describing what happened as a “terror attack.”
“Unfortunately (he) rained bullets in a very cruel and merciless way on innocent people who were there to celebrate New Year’s and have fun.”
Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said the gunman escaped the scene and is still on the run: “The search for the terrorist continues… Our security forces have started the necessary operations. God willing he will be caught in a short period of time.”
The death toll so far from the massacre is 39 and Mr. Soylu stated that of 21 victims who had been identified so far, 16 were foreigners and five were Turkish citizens. Another 69 people were transferred to a hospital for their wounds to be treated.
So what of images of the gunman?
There were believed to be more than around 700 people in the club at the time of the shooting. Many party-goers threw themselves into the Bosphorus, which is a local river way, in a panicked fear. Efforts were underway to fish out those that jumped in the water.
The location of the attacker was still undiscovered and some reports suggested there were more than one attacker. Some witnesses believed that they heard the attackers “speaking Arabic,” while surveillance footage appeared to show the gunman spraying bullets at random victims outside the club before entering. Another CCTV image is believed to show the attacker changing his jacket before he walks around the club and enters.
İşte ilk götüntüler. 40 civarı yaralı olduğu belirtiliyor. pic.twitter.com/FExbV7e7Qy
— Murat Şahin (@SunucuSpiker) December 31, 2016