Turkish diplomat is slain in downtown Los Angeles

The Turkish consul general in Los Angeles, Kemal Arikan, was assassinated by gunmen who opened fire on his car in the city center Thursday, a police spokesman said.

An anonymous caller who claimed to be a member of a group calling itself the Justice Commandos of Armenian Genocide telephoned newspaper offices to say his group had killed a Turkish diplomat.

The group claims the Turks murdered up to 1.5 million Armenians during World War I by slaughtering them or sending them on forced ''death marches'' to the Syrian desert. Turkey has maintained that the affair has been vastly exaggerated by Armenian nationalists.

No arrests were immediately made.

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