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ANKARA: Arrest Warrant Issued For Key Suspect In Restarted Dink Case

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  • ANKARA: Arrest Warrant Issued For Key Suspect In Restarted Dink Case


    Hurriyet Daily News, Turkey
    Sept 17 2013


    One of the most controversial cases of recent Turkish history,
    murder of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink, restarts. Dink
    family denies to attend trials of 'crime coalition's game' as court
    issues an arrest warrant for the key suspect Erhan Tuncel

    An Istanbul court has issued an arrest warrant for Erhan Tuncel,
    a former police informant and suspect in the resumed murder case of
    Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink.

    Tuncel had been released with the first verdict, which has now been
    overturned. Dink's family protested the trial and refused to attend,
    saying "they are not a part of this game."

    "As the Dink family, we will no more be tools to the state mechanisms
    that have been mocking us and we will not attend the hearings of the
    retrial," Dink's family said in a letter published on the website of
    the Armenian-Turkish daily Agos.

    "The crime coalition that is called the state recommitted the murder
    in every hearing, every day while it presented itself as if seeking
    justice. That coalition is the crime gang itself that planned the
    murder and then covered it up."

    Tuncel is a key suspect

    Tuncel is seen as a key in linking the murder to the state institutions
    as members of the Police Department in the Black Sea province of
    Trabzon, the suspects' hometown, have been accused of failing to relay
    intelligence provided by Tuncel to the Trabzon Gendarmerie Command
    in a report prepared by Turkey's State Supervisory Council (DDK).

    Dink, the renowned editor-in-chief of Agos, was shot in front of his
    office in Istanbul on Jan. 19, 2007, after being repeatedly prosecuted
    for "insulting Turkishness."

    The triggerman, Ogun Samast, who was 17 years old at the time of the
    murder, and Yasin Hayal, who was charged with being the instigator
    of the assassination, were convicted of the murder.

    However, a high criminal court dismissed charges related to "armed
    terrorist organization." The Supreme Court of Appeals verdict defined
    the acts of all suspects in the case under "an organization formed to
    commit crime" according to the Turkish Penal Code Article 220. Hayal
    yesterday denied that he was involved in any criminal organization
    involved in the murder.

    Around 200 demonstrators gathered outside the Istanbul court where
    eight defendants were being retried after an appeals court deemed
    they were part of a criminal conspiracy. Crowds accused authorities
    of covering up a conspiracy by nationalist elements in the state

    The crowd chanted "the murderer state will give account" and "we are
    all Hrant, we are all Armenians," holding up banners in Turkish,
    Armenian and Kurdish. They see Dink as the victim of a shadowy
    "deep state" network of nationalist militants accused of killings of
    prominent liberals and Kurdish nationalists.

    "This show must end, the real perpetrators must be brought to justice,"
    Gulten Kaya, the widow of well-known Kurdish singer Ahmet Kaya,
    told reporters outside the court.

    Dink's family and his supporters reject the premise of the retrial
    that the defendants were part of a criminal conspiracy and argue that
    the state was involved in what amounted to a terrorist conspiracy.

    The case was adjourned to December 3.


    From: A. Papazian