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Turkish Court Imprisons Assailant of Priest

A Turkish court has sentenced a 19-year-old man to more than four years in prison for stabbing a Roman Catholic priest last year in western Turkey.

The Izmir city court sentenced defendant Ramazan Bay Monday and fined him for carrying the switchblade knife used in the attack.

Bay stabbed the 65-year-old Italian priest in December 2007, after a Mass at a church in Izmir, and surrendered shortly after the attack. The priest survived.

Turkey's small Christian community has been targeted in recent years in several attacks, including one last year in which three Christians - two of them Turkish converts - were killed in the central city of Malatya. Another Italian Catholic priest was shot and killed in 2006 in Trabzon.

A Turkish-Armenian journalist was slain last year in Istanbul by a nationalist gunman.

Writer Hrant Dink had angered Turkish nationalists by using the term "genocide" to describe the mass killings of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire of the early 20th century.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.