Convictions in Case of Christian Journalist Murdered in Turkey Fail to Satisfy


Family of Hrant Dink, proponent of reconciliation between Turks and Armenians who riled government officials through his genocide advocacy, say justice has not gone deep enough.

Fourteen years later, there is some resolution for the family of the assassinated Turkish-Armenian journalist, Hrant Dink.

But not enough.

“The judgment given today is quite far from the truth,” said the family in its official statement on March 26.

“Not the evil itself but its leakage was punished.”

In 2007, Dink was shot four times in front of the Istanbul office of his bilingual newspaper, Agos. A proponent of reconciliation between Turks and Armenians, he aroused official opposition through his passionate focus on the 1915 genocide. Two years earlier he had been arrested and convicted of “insulting Turkishness.”

The killer, a 17-year-old unemployed youth, was given a 23-year sentence in 2011.

But one week before his death, Dink had written an article stating he felt “like a pigeon,” targeted by the deep state “to make me know my place.“

Around 100,000 people attended his funeral, chanting, “We are all Armenians.”

Last week, the Turkish judiciary put 76 people on trial, convicting 26 and handing out 4 sentences of life imprisonment. Two were given to the former director of police intelligence and his deputy, for murder and the subsequent cover-up.

The family is not convinced this includes the entire “mechanism.”

“Some officials are still at large,” said Erol Önderoglu, the representative of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) in Turkey.

“This partial justice … leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.”

RSF ranks Turkey No. 154 out of 180 nations in its 2020 index on respect for press freedom.

Soner Tufan, spokesman for the Association of Protestant Churches in Turkey, said the verdict was “not surprising.” It fits …

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