Attack Outside US Consulate In Turkey Leaves 6 Dead

ISTANBUL, Turkey — Turkish police say they suspect Al-Qaida is behind the attack on the U.S. consulate in Istanbul.  Armed men opened fire on Turkish police guarding the consulate’s entrance, killing three policemen. Three assailants were also killed.

Men armed with pistols and shotguns attacked a police guard post outside the consulate, sparking a gun battle that left three attackers and three officers dead.

The shootout caused panic and scattered people who were waiting in line for visas. A Turkish news agency says U.S. security personnel went inside the compound because they are not authorized to engage in armed action on Turkish soil.

Turkish and U.S. officials are calling the shooting a terrorist attack. U.S. Ambassador Ross Wilson and Turkey’s foreign ministry say security around all American diplomatic missions in Turkey has been increased.