Church door set ablaze in Istanbul
DHA PhotoA Greek Orthodox church’s door was set ablaze in the evening of June 9 in the Kadıköy district on Istanbul’s Anatolia side.
A door of the Hagia Triada Greek Orthodox Church was set on fire on June 9 by Muhammed Şimdi, 25, who reportedly suffers from a mental illness. The church is located on Nispetiye Street, a side street of Bahariye, Kadıköy’s main thoroughfare.
The perpetrator rolled around the church holding a paper box of paint thinner, which he used to set one of the church’s unused doors on fire at around 8:30 p.m. after he jumped over the walls of the church compound.
The door immediately caught fire and the perpetrator attempted to escape shouting “Allahu Akbar.”
He was captured by officers of the municipal police and the people who saw the flames at the time. The fire was extinguished by the locals near the scene.
Şimdi was reported to have a criminal record and to be suffering from some form of mental illness, as he had previously undergone mental treatment in the Erenköy Mental Hospital, according to police records.
Konstantin Kiracopolos, an employee working for the foundation running the church, told reporters the perpetrator set the door on fire after claiming he saw Jesus Christ in a dream. The foundation has filed a complaint against the perpetrator, Kiracopolos added.