Today's Zaman, Turkey
Dec 5 2007

Parliamentary committee visits Dink's family

A delegation from Parliament carrying out an investigation into the
murder of ethnic Armenian journalist Hrant Dink visited the slain
journalist's family home in Bakýrköy on Friday.

Members of the parliamentary Human Rights Committee, Justice and
Development Party (AK Party) deputies Mehmet Ocaktan and Kazým
Ataoðlu, Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy Çetin Soysal,
Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) deputy Þenol Bal and Democratic Left
Party (DSP) deputy Ayþe Jale Aðýrbaþ talked to the journalist's
widow, Rakel Dink, his brother, Orhan, his son, Arat, and the
family's attorney for about an hour and a half.
Ocaktan, who headed the delegation, in a press conference shortly
after the visit said: "They provided us with information that will
shed light on our investigation. It was a very good visit for us."

In response to a question over whether the family had hinted that
they plan to leave Turkey, Ocaktan said, "They said no such thing."

Ocaktan noted that the family would like to see in the committee's
final report findings which demonstrate that Turkey is a state of
law. "This is something every Turkish citizen wants. This is what
they want. They said they want to see that the rights of every
citizen living in this country are being protected and said they have
full confidence in the law."

The committee assured the family that an objective investigation
committed to the law would be conducted. "All of our members are
determined on this. We are evaluating everything very objectively. We
told them that they should not have the slightest worry in that

In response to a question over how the committee members were
affected by having been to Dink's house during the visit, Ocaktan
said, "It is really tragic that Turkey lost such an important
intellectual and that we had to make such a visit to his home. We
wish that Turkey had never lived through such shame. But we have. The
victory of law in the end will make up for this shame. This will be a
victory for all of us."

He said they had completed their work in Ýstanbul and will be
continuing their investigation in the capital and in the Black Sea
province of Trabzon, where Dink's murder had been planned.

Dink was shot by an ultranationalist teenager outside his newspaper,
Agos, in Ýstanbul on Jan. 19, 2007. Allegations that the police knew
about the assassination plot before it was carried out have
significantly undermined confidence in the legal investigation into
the Dink murder. Also, some of the suspects in the murder were found
to have ties with the police force.

The young man who shot Dink had stated that he killed the journalist
because he had insulted Turkishness. Dink was tried under a penal
code article that criminalizes "denigrating Turkishness" over an
article conveying his views on Armenian genocide allegations.


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