Turkish police search for suspect in New Year’s nightclub attack

Thursday, January 5, 2017

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Key Points

  • A terror attack on a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey early in the morning on New Year’s Day left 39 dead and nearly 70 wounded.
  • Turkish police are still searching for the suspected shooter, although the Islamic State (ISIS) has claimed responsibility.
  • Turkey has been a key member of the air campaign against ISIS and has sent troops into Syria in part to fight the group.
  • The attack is the latest in a string of violent incidents in Turkey in recent months, including an attack on Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport which killed 45 people in June and the assassination of the Russian ambassador just two weeks ago.
  • Turkey’s military has vowed to continue carrying out airstrikes and artillery shelling on ISIS positions in Syria.

Key Terms

Islamic State (ISIS) — a militant movement that has conquered territory in western Iraq and eastern Syria and follows an Islamic fundamentalist doctrine


  1. Essential question: What is the best way to respond to terror attacks?
  2. Why does Turkey’s geographic location make it particularly invested in the fight against ISIS?
  3. Why have nightclubs been a repeated target for terrorist attacks?