ISTANBUL, Turkey -- Hundreds of mourners congregated at the Christ Church in Istanbul to offer prayers for the victims of Thursday’s bomb blasts, which left 28 dead and 400 injured, Nov. 23.
"This week we have seen the innocent crucified again," said Rev. Ian Sherwood, who led the prayers. The Church, located near the British consulate and London-based HSBC bank where the bombs took place, was under heavy security and surveillance.
Sherwood then encouraged the British community to move forward, though they were “crushed” by the tragedy. He also called for more people in the Islamic community to say, “enough is enough” to the violence.
"We have seen evil attempting to overthrow goodness, the glorious thing is we gather here together strongly to commemorate them,” added Sherwood.
Following the service, the British Ambassador Peter Westmascott commented that on the positive side, there was a sense of unity between the British and Turkish community owing to the blasts.
"There is a sense this was British and Turkish people who suffered together,” said Westmascott. "Everyone is in shock but what's happening is a sense of the community coming together after a horrendous week.
A full memorial service for the victims is due in a few weeks time.