Outrage over attack on Syrian refugee child’s dogs in Istanbul
A video taken in the early hours of Jan. 15 showing four attackers stabbing and beating dogs in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, including the dog of a young Syrian rough sleeper, has stirred angry reactions from Turkish social media users.
Four people, including one woman, can be seen in the video approaching the child, since identified as 14-year-old Mohammed Ali, and asking to take one of the puppies sleeping next to him on the streets.
Following a brief discussion, the puppy’s mother starts to bark at the group and three of the attackers start to beat the dogs with belts. One of the attackers can also be seen stabbing the puppy’s mother, after which the attackers flee the scene.
Following the attack the wounded dog was delivered to a nearby veterinary service and taken under treatment, after which he will reportedly be handed back to Mohammed Ali.
Mohammed Ali reportedly lost his father and mother in Syria and in 2015 arrived in Turkey, where he started living on the streets as he had no relatives in Istanbul.
“I have one puppy and am trying to look after it. Pasha [the mother of the puppy] was stabbed and I couldn’t do anything. Pasha is currently being treated by the municipality. She will come back in one or two months. I sleep alongside them. I give them food, I do everything for them. I love her like my friend, my only friend,” he told reporters after the attack.
No investigation has yet been opened into the incident.