Russian ambassador’s assassin watched al Qaeda video before striking

The man who assassinated Andrey Karlov, Russia’s ambassador to Turkey, watched an Al Qaeda propaganda video shortly before carrying out his deadly attack on an Ankara art gallery.

This is according to the official indictment submitted by Turkish prosecutors to the Ankara 2nd high criminal court.

On December 19, 2016, off duty policeman Mevlut Mert Altintas took out his gun and shot the ambassador during the official opening of art gallery in Ankara in full view of television cameras during a live broadcast.

According to the indictment Altintas downloaded a video titled “You are responsible only of yourself.”

The video, which has been seen by IPA, clearly presents the radical propaganda of Al Qaeda in which the audience is motivated to go on a Islamic jihad and suicide attacks in all around the world.

According to a report dated January 26, 2018 by a committee of experts whose findings were included in the indictment, a hard drive of Altintas contained video talks of Nurettin Yildiz, the president of the Social Fabric Foundation (Sosyal Doku Vakfı) as well as audio files of the Chechenia and Hamas anthems.

The report says that Altintas also watched the propaganda video of Al Qaeda on Youtube and downloaded it to his personal computer, which was impounded by Turkish police as evidence after he was shot by police during a standoff.

“In consequence of examination, it is confirmed that Mevlut Mert Altintas searched ‘Sadece kendinden sorumlusun’ (You are only responsible of yourself) on the YouTube video platform on 14/02/2016 and downloaded a video of the same title into two devices, to a flash disk drive and a laptop he shared with his flatmate,” the experts noted.

The report also says that the video of Al Qaeda was deleted from his computer on December 18, 2016, which is the day before he assassinated the Russian diplomat.


The 54-minute video, which is an open call in Arabic by al Qaeda for terrorist attacks in Western countries. The the Arabic language video with a Turkish headline was removed from YouTube, but it still could be found in various websites & forums.

In the very beginning of the video Osama bin Laden, the former ideological leader of Al Qaeda who is believed to be the mastermind behind the 9/11 attacks of 2001, says: “As long as we don’t live freely in Palestine, as long as infidels don’t go away from our countries, I swear God that the US and nobody in the US will be safe.”

Mert Altintas screamed a very similar jihadi slogan moments after murdering the Russian ambassador.

“Don’t forget Aleppo, do not forget Syria. As long as our countries aren’t secured you will never enjoy being secured.”

The video shows footage from various countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, and Palestine where US and Israeli forces have conducted attacks.

The propaganda video focuses on “Single attacks” known as lone wolf attacks. It claims that they started in 1990, when Egyptian jihadist Sayyid Nosair assassinated Meir Kahane, a far-right Israeli-American politician. Nosair is promoted as hero in the video. The Magnum branded gun he used to kill the politician is shown.

Some jihadists in the video speak English calling on everyone to take part in the war against “infidels.”

Prosecutors claim Altintas was part of a wider plot to derail Turkish-Russian relations and blame Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara says orchestrated the coup attempt in July 2016, for the killing of the ambassador.

In the indictment 27 people along with Gulen are accused of plotting or having an involvement in the murder.

Gulen, opposing radical Islamist ideology, has denied the allegations.

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