Saturday 25 November 2017

Turkey terror attack: Facebook post asking ‘Will you be Ankara?’ goes viral

Medics ferry a casualty from the explosion site in the centre of Ankara (AP)
Medics ferry a casualty from the explosion site in the centre of Ankara (AP)

Meadhbh McGrath

A British man living in Ankara has shared a Facebook post urging his followers to empathise with the victims of a suicide bombing in the Turkish capital last night.

The attack, which killed 37 people and injured more than 100, was carried out with a car bomb, the second such attack to take place in the city in less than a month and third explosion to ravage the city since October 2015.

James Taylor, who hails from Northamptonshire, England, but has called Ankara “home” for the last 18 months, encouraged readers to imagine the attacks had happened near their homes.

“The bombing this evening occurred in the one of the most crowded parts of the centre of town, next to many bus stops with people waiting to go home, arriving for a night out, and sitting in the park relaxing and drinking tea.

“(It) 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.”

He went on by inviting readers to consider the victims: “The teenagers catching the bus to go home, the grandparents walking into town, the people waiting for a taxi after a long day laughing and socialising in the sun.

“Now imagine they were English, and this attack was in England. If these people were instead the people you see every day on your way to work, people just like you and I, normal, happy people. Families, policemen, students, artists, couples. Your friends maybe. These people are no different. They just happen to be Turkish.”

The post now has more than 42,000 shares on Facebook, and has amassed 50,000 ‘likes’ and reactions.

He continues: “It is very easy to look at terror attacks that happen in London, in New York, in Paris and feel pain and sadness for those victims, so why is it not the same for Ankara? Is it because you just don't realise that Ankara is no different from any of these cities?”

Mr Taylor concludes with a reference to last year’s terror attacks in Paris, and asks his followers: “You were Charlie, you were Paris. Will you be Ankara?”

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