Pope's attacker released after 25 years
The Pope has written in his last book that it was the part of a divine plan and Agca was merely a puppet.india Updated: Jan 12, 2006 15:09 IST
The Turkish man who tried to kill Pope John Paul II almost 25 years was finally released from the Istanbul prison on Thursday.
MehmetAli Agca, 48,served 19 years in Italy and was later extradited to Istanbul in 2000 after he shot at the Pope at St Peter's Square on May 13, 1981 and seriously wounded him in the abdomen. Why he did so remains a mystery.
The Pope had later met him in prison and forgiven him.
The Pope wrote in his last book, Memory and Identity, that it was the part of a divine plan and Agca was merely a puppet.
Agca will first report to the military authorities after being released for evading military service, which is compulsory for all Turkish men over 18.
"Agca says he is ready to fulfil military service like every other Turkish citizen, but we will use our legal rights to avoid him having to go into the army, Mustafa Demirbag, his lawyer,said.