Anti-Israel protests disrupting cities (to the point of being banned in France), anti-semitism surfacing at prestigious universities, a Molotov cocktail in a Canadian city, a member of the U.S. Congress with a Palestinian flag draped in front of her office.
Hamas vs. Israel. Where does it end?
Or, perhaps more correctly — is it just beginning? Because now it’s at the stage of hostage-taking.
Thankfully, everyone is safe after a former employee nabbed seven hostages at gunpoint Thursday at a Procter & Gamble factory in Gebze, Turkey, in protest of the Israel-Hamas war, according to news reports.
“The assailant was apprehended by law enforcement authorities,” a P&G spokesperson told CBS News. “Personnel who were being held were safely evacuated.”
Around 3 p.m. local time, the gunman entered the U.S.-owned P&G factory in the Turkish province of Kocaeli.
He demanded a cease-fire in Gaza and took the hostages, resulting in 9 to 10 hours of negotiation, various news media reported.
Anti-riot police raided the factory when the gunman took a bathroom break, Agence France-Presse and The Times of Israel reported.
“Our esteemed police members and our heroic security forces made the necessary intervention as soon as we were sure that no harm would come to the hostages,” Gov. Seddar Yavuz said through the state-run Anadolu news agency, according to ABC News.
“The fact no one was harmed is our greatest relief,” was the reaction from the P&G spokesperson. “We are grateful to the authorities and first responders who managed the situation with courage and professionalism.”
The suspect also was unharmed, ABC said.
Initial reports of two gunmen were erroneous, a government official said.
Turkish media showed a suspect inside the factory holding a handgun and apparently wearing some kind of explosives.
A black-and-white headscarf covered the man’s face, and he was shown next to a wall with graffiti that had flags of Turkey and Palestine and writing that said: “The gates will open. Either musalla or death for Gaza.”
Musalla means a Muslim prayer area, usually related to funerals.
After the gunman took hostages, police sealed roads in the area and began negotiations, ultimately ending in the raid, CBS reported.
Public sentiment in Turkey against Israel and the U.S. has been increasing since the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israeli civilians.
It doesn’t help that an anti-Israel attitude has been expressed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has called Israel a “terrorist state” and has compared Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Adolph Hitler, CBS reported.
In November, Brian Nelson, the U.S. Treasury Department’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, expressed concern about Turkey connecting Hamas with financial resources, Financial Times reported.
In addition to protests regarding the Gaza situation, and now the P&G hostage incident, there have been attacks on iconic U.S. businesses like McDonald’s and Starbucks in Turkey, the news outlet reported.
P&G is headquartered in Cincinnati. Its Gebze factory mainly makes cosmetics.
The company has 700 employees at a total of three locations in Turkey, including Istanbul and in the province of Kocaeili.
Besides cosmetics, P&G products made in Turkey include cleaning and hygiene products, including toothpaste.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.