02.05.2006 19:46 GMT+04:00

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Editor of the Agos Armenian newspaper, ethnic
Armenian Hrant Dink was given a six-month suspended sentence last
October. He had written a newspaper article which addressed the mass
killings of Ottoman Armenians nine decades ago, the BBC reports. This
case is one of several monitored closely by EU officials concerned
about limits on free speech in Turkey.

In February, the chief prosecutor's office at the Appeals Court
considered Mr Dink's case and recommended that the remarks were in
no way insulting.

But now, in a surprise development, the court itself has chosen to
ignore that interpretation and ruled that the substance of the charge
still stands. The high-profile newspaper editor, whose publication
Agos appears in Turkish and Armenian, was first found guilty of
insulting Turkishness last year when a court ruled that one of his
articles described Turkish blood as dirty.

European Union officials have expressed serious concern about the
article of law that was used against Hrant Dink and several dozen
other writers here in Turkey. Despite a series of reforms linked to
Turkey's bid for membership of the EU, it is still illegal to insult
the Turkish identity, the military and the judiciary and the line
between criticism and insult is often blurred.

We note that the next trial on Dink's case is scheduled in Istanbul
May 16.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress