Saturday, February 3, 2007
According to news reports from Turkey, a number of the members of the Turkish security forces, though unofficially, are treating Ogün Samast, the assassin of Hrant Dink as if he were a national hero.
For instance, after being taken into custody, Samast was filmed shoulder to shoulder with the Turkish police, in front of a Turkish flag and a quote from Turkey's founder Atatürk: "The nation's land is sacred. It cannot be left to fate."
On January 24th, Ogün Samast was transferred to the Bayrampaşa prison, Istanbul's largest prison. Before the transfer, inmates from a section of the prison were temporarily moved to another section, which, as a result, housed more than 100 inmates, 80 more than its maximum capacity. Then, the now-vacant section, often subject to inmates' complaints regarding bedbugs, was cleaned and disinfected. Finally, the walls were painted, a brand new cotton bed was put in, and red carpet was laid out on the floors of the section.
When Samast was brought to the Bayrampaşa Prison, inmates witnessed that he was welcomed with cheers and applause by the jail management, soldiers, and the guards. Witnesses also report that Samast was given two guards to serve him. He ate kebab, a luxury food compared to the food given to other inmates.
After four days, Samast was transferred to the Kandıra F-type Prison.
Ultra-nationalist elements of the Turkish society seem to have penetrated into the Turkish security forces. These events resulted major Turkish newspapers such as Sabah, Radikal, and Vatan to accuse the Turkish security forces and the Turkish state of supporting, endorsing, and cooperating with the killers of the journalist.
A 52 year old Turkish-Armenian journalist, Hrant Dink was assassinated in front of the Agos newspaper office, at the Istanbul district of Osmanbey, where he worked as the editor and a journalist. Dink, a brave journalist who was not afraid to discuss one of Turkey's most controversial issues, clearly called what happened to Armenians in 1915 when the land was being governed by the Ottoman Empire the Armenian Genocide.
Following her father's assassination, Dink's daughter, referring to the fascist obsession with pure blood, said:
Large numbers of people marched protesting the killing of Hrant Dink on the day of his funeral, carrying placards that read "We are all Armenian" and "We are all Hrant Dink".
== Related news ==
"Ferry hijacked to protest slogans in assassinated Turkish-Armenian journalist's funeral" — Wikinews, January 28, 2007
"Militant group 'protests' placards used in Armenian-Turkish journalist's funeral" — Wikinews, Jan 25, 2007
"Two major political parties protest placards used in Armenian-Turkish journalist's funeral" — Wikinews, January 25, 2007
"Murdered journalist Hrant Dink feared for safety: brother" — Wikinews, January 22, 2007
"Suspected assassin of Turkish-Armenian journalist arrested" — Wikinews, January 21, 2007
"Turkish-Armenian journalist killed in Turkey" — Wikinews, January 19, 2007
== Sources ==
"Turkey probes Dink suspect video" — BBC News Online, February 2, 2007
"Samast Bayrampaşa'da da 'resmi tören'le karşılanmış (Samast was welcomed at Bayrampaşa with an 'official ceremony')" — Radikal, February 2, 2007