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Turkish court says bishop's killer acted alone

Catholic World News - June 11, 2013

The 2010 murder of a Catholic bishop in Turkey was the work of a lone individual, not a group or religious faction, a Turkish court has ruled.

Bishop Luigi Padovese was stabbed by his driver, Murat Altun, “for uncertain reasons,” the court inquiry concluded. As possible motives, the inquiry cited reports that Altun was depressed and unconfirmed claims that the bishop had sought to convert him to Christianity. While saying that it was impossible to establish a clear motive, the court said that it was clear Altun had not planned the killing in advance.

Catholic Church leaders in Turkey had pressed the government for a thorough investigation of the bishop’s murder. Some had suggested that the killing was prompted by Islamic extremism, and cited the report that after stabbing Bishop Padovese, Altun had shouted, “Allah Akbar.” Others questioned why Altun had been recommended by government officials to be the bishop’s driver.

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