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Heroic Turk risks his life to save Austrian policeman amid Vienna shooting


Speaking to Turkey's state-run news agency on Tuesday, Recep Tayyip Gültekin -- an Austrian citizen of Turkish national -- recounted how he rushed to the shooting area in the capital Vienna to save the lives of an injured Austrian policeman and an elderly woman by taking them to the safe spots despite his own bullet injury.

A heroic Turk hurled himself into a hail of bullets in Vienna Monday night, risking his life to save both an injured woman and a police officer from terrorist attack.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency Tuesday, Recep Tayyip Gültekin said he was hoping to sit in a cafe with his friend Mikail Özen that fateful night, before a new coronavirus lockdown came into effect.

But when he saw a woman injured by the terrorist attack, he jumped in to move her out of harm's way, heedless of the risk he would certainly face.

After taking the woman to a safe spot, Gültekin himself was in the line of terrorist gunfire, and took a bullet to the leg.

After speaking to the police and aiding an elderly woman in shock due to the attack, he saw a police officer also injured by the terrorists, and again moved to help, despite his own bullet injury.

"Other policemen were watching, I shouted at them for help, but they didn't do anything.

"I said to Mikail, we'll handle this," he related.

After reaching the injured officer, they carried him to an ambulance, said Gültekin: "I was holding him from his back, and Mikail was carrying his feet."

The officer had been injured between the abdominal cavity and calf and lost a lot of blood, Gültekin said.

The paramedics wanted to take Gültekin to the hospital but he refused because there were many people suffering injuries, he added.

Later, after making his way to the hospital, doctors told Gültekin the bullet pellet might have to stay in his leg as removing it might cause problems.


Saying that he lives in Austria and makes his living here, Gültekin said: "The police who were injured were my police. The people injured were my people. I give my condolences to the Austrian state and hope the injured people make a quick recovery."

He added: "If the same thing happens tomorrow, I wouldn't hesitate to save people. I don't want to see discrimination between Muslims, Jews, or Christians. Terror has no place in these religions. Terror is terror everywhere."

Ozan Ceyhun, Turkey's ambassador in Vienna, hailed the brave young men on Twitter, linking to a Austrian press account of their deeds: "Heroes of the Vienna attack: two men rescued injured police officers."

At least four people died and 17 more were wounded in the terror attack in Austria's capital on Monday evening, authorities have confirmed.

The injured include a police officer, according to the Vienna Police Department.


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