Incident Summary:

11/14/2003: Two car bombings by the militant Islamic group, Great East Islamic Raiders Front (IBDA-C - Islami Buyuk Dogu Akincilar Cephesi), on synagogues in Istanbul, Turkey, killed at least twenty people and injured 302 others. One of the two almost simultaneous blasts occurred at the Beth Israel Synagogue, damaging the building and several cars. Numerous people were reportedly killed and injured in the bombing. The group identified itself in a telephone call to the Anadolu News Agency.




Middle East & North Africa

region/u.s. state:



Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Bombing/Explosion
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Religious Figures/Institutions
Name of Entity Synagogue
Specific Description Beth Israel Synagogue
Nationality of Target Turkey
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Unknown
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Explosives Vehicle
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?Yes
Part of Multiple Incident?Yes
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) No
Additional Information Casualty numbers for this attack represent an equal division of a cumulative total of killed and wounded across incidents 200311140003 and 200311140004. Casualty numbers for this incident conflict across sources. Following GTD protocol, the majority reliable estimates are reported here.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Great Eastern Islamic Raiders Front (IBDA-C) Yes (Confirmed: Unknown; Mode: Call (post-incident))
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators Unknown
Number of Captured Perpetrators 0
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 11 Fatalities / 151 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 11
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 1
Total Number of Injured 151
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
"At Least Twenty Killed in Istanbul Synagogue Blasts,” Deutsche Presse-Agentur, November 15, 2003.
"Powerful Blasts Strike Two Istanbul Synagogues, at Least Twenty Dead,” Agence France Presse, November 15, 2003.
James Helicke, “Simultaneous Explosions Hit Near Two Synagogues in Istanbul; Twenty-Three People Reported Killed,” Associated Press, November 15, 2003.