ROME (AA) - A Turkish ambassador to Vatican City who was martyred in 1977 by an Armenian terrorist group was commemorated at the Vatican in Rome late Tuesday.
The so-called “Justice Commandos of the Armenian Genocide" (JCAG) shot Turkish diplomat Taha Carim with automatic weapons on June 9, 1977 after he got out of his car.
Carim was commemorated in the ceremony at the Vatican’s Palazzo della Cancelleria starting with a minute of silence.
Mehmet Pacaci, Turkey’s current ambassador to the Vatican, thanked the Vatican for commemorating the martyr.
After the ceremony, an iftar meal was given to the guests because of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Speaking to Turkish media after the ceremony, Pacaci said, "As you know, our ambassador was martyred 39 years ago, on June 9, 1977. Now we have commemorated him with an iftar meal for the first time. It will continue like this. The guests found it meaningful, and we prayed for him."
During 1975-1984, Turkish ambassadors and diplomats were targeted around the world by the Armenian terrorist group the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) and similar groups.
In order to compel the Turkish government to acknowledge publicly its responsibility for the so-called Armenian genocide in 1915, pay reparations, and cede territory for an Armenian homeland, ASALA killed a total of 42 Turkish diplomats in various attacks in that decade.
The Armenian terrorist acts intensified from 1980 to 1983, when 580 of the 699 attacks occurred. The terrorist attacks ended in 1986.