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Thousands gather to show support for secularism

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Thousands gather to show support for secularism


With judges from Turkey’s highest court leading the way, thousands paid homage to modern Turkey’s founding father Ataturk in the capital Ankara.

The gathering came in response to the killing of a top Turkish judge and the wounding of four others in a gun attack. The incident has exposed the gulf between the country’s secularists and those keen to give religion a greater role in national life. Turkey’s secular roots date back to the leadership of Ataturk, who abolished religious dress and adopted a European-style legal code in 1923… Those laying flowers at his tomb today were making a symbolic gesture in favour of those principles. Police arrested the gunman, a lawyer in his late 20s, shortly after he burst into the Council of State court chambers yesterday and opened fire, reportedly shouting “God is great”. He apparently targeted the judges because of their recent ruling against teachers wearing Muslim headscarves. Police have reportedly arrested two more people in connection with the attack.
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