ISIS Claim Responsibility For Istanbul Nightclub Atrocity

From Daily-Mail:
ISIS fanatics have claimed responsibility for the Istanbul nightclub atrocity as an international manhunt continues for the gunman who murdered 39 revellers.
Photos from inside Istanbul's packed Reina club show partygoers celebrating moments before he stormed the venue.

The assassin calmly stepped out of a taxi outside the club before removing an AK-47 from his bag. CCTV footage then shows the man firing indiscriminately as he went on the five-and-a-half minute rampage.

Shocking new details of the attack, which also left 70 injured, emerged as the first funerals of victims were held last night.
ISIS this morning released a statement claiming it had carried out the attack.

Footage filmed at the entrance of the nightclub in Istanbul's Ortaköy district, shows the man shooting indiscriminately as he rained down 'a hail of bullets' on the clubbers.

Grainy CCTV images released by Turkish police shows the suspect who fled the club after the massacre.

The footage emerged as the first victims of the massacre were named, including a female security guard and an Israeli Arab tourist.

The gunman is seen casually strolling into the nightclub holding the weapon before carrying out the killing spree while reportedly shouting 'Allahu Akbar'.

He later escaped in the chaos that ensued, forcing Turkish police to launch a major manhunt.

Fifteen of the dead are believed to be foreign nationals, including one Israeli woman and people from Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Lebanon and Libya. Others include a Turkish-Belgian dual citizen and a Franco-Tunisian woman.

A further 69 people are thought to have been wounded in the attack, which happened in the early hours of this morning.

Among the victims was a 27-year-old female private security guard from northeast Turkey.

Mother-of-one Hatice Koc'un was working at the Reina nightclub on the night of the attack as Turkish law requires a woman guard to be present to search female clubbers.

Her family identified her body at the morgue yesterday, Turkish media reported.

The day before the attack, Koc'un, whose daughter is three years old, shared pictures of herself on social media wearing sunglasses and kissing the Turkish flag.

A  19-year-old Israeli woman has also been named as among the dead.

Leanne Nasser was on holiday with three female friends, all from the Arab-majority village of Tira in northern Israel.
One of her friends was also injured, while the other two were traumatised but physically unharmed, Israeli officials told MailOnline.

Four other Israeli-Arab women were also caught up in the attack, an Israeli government source told MailOnline.

They were visiting Turkey to celebrate the New Year despite security concerns.
'Their friends told them not to come because they thought it was too dangerous,' said Shira Ben Zion, Israel's deputy consul in Istanbul.
'They are very shocked and confused and they just want to get back home.'

Israeli officials are providing the women with consular support and helping them return to Israel, she added.

Also gunned down was police officer Burak Yildiz, who had been guarding the front of the upmarket riverside club.

The 21-year-old had reportedly been in the job for 12 months when he was shot dead after the building was stormed.

Victim Fatih Çakmak was also a policeman and on duty at the nightclub during the New Year celebrations.

He has previously escaped an attack while working at a match between Beşiktaş and Bursaspor last month when a car bomb exploded.

Club worker Kenan Kutluk was also killed. His Facebook page shows him posing next to footballer Diego Costa, who had previously visited the club.
Three Lebanese citizens were among those killed, Lebanon's foreign ministry said.

Four other Lebanese were wounded in the attack, it said. The ministry named those killed as Elias Wardini, Haykal Mousallem and Rita Shami.
While police have released several images of a suspect, they do not have yet have a name.

An earlier report on the shooting included a photograph, which was understood to have been issued by Turkish police, of a man who the police were said to be looking for. In fact the man in the photograph had nothing to do with the shooting, is not a suspect and is not being sought by police.

Turkish police launched a major manhunt for the attacker, who Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim revealed left his weapon inside the venue and escaped by 'taking advantage of the chaos' that ensued.

He also said there was no truth to reports that the attacker wore a Santa hat, despite the CCTV footage from inside the club appearing to show the gunman in a festive-style costume.
CCTV appears to show the Istanbul nightclub attackers

Turkey's president, Tayyip Erdogan, vowed to continue to fight against terror attacks and the fear they cause.
In a statement he said: 'As a nation, we will fight to the end against not just the armed attacks of terror groups and the forces behind them, but also against their economic, political and social attacks.

'They are trying to create chaos, demoralize our people, and destabilize our country with abominable attacks which target civilians.
'We will retain our cool-headedness as a nation, standing more closely together, and we will never give ground to such dirty games.'

The governor of Istanbul Vasip Sahin confirmed the shooting was a terrorist attack.
He said: 'Unfortunately (the gunman) rained bullets in a very cruel and merciless way on innocent people who were there to celebrate New Year's and have fun.'

Interior minister Suleyman Soylu said the attacker was still at large.
'Our security forces have started the necessary operations. God willing he will be caught in a short period of time'

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