ANKARA: Journalist Kemal Goktas: Police Knew Dink Would Be Killed


Today’s Zaman
Feb 17 2010

Kemal Goktas, a correspondent for the Vatan daily in Ankara, said in
an Istanbul court yesterday that the Istanbul Police Department knew
that Turkish-Armenian writer Hrant Dink was to be killed but did not
take any precautions.

In a hearing at Istanbul’s 2nd Court of First Instance, Goktas,
who is being tried for revealing secret documents and jeopardizing
the state’s police department, said in his defense that the Trabzon
Police Department had informed the Istanbul Police Department about
the plans for Dink’s murder.

In his book, "Hrant Dink’s Murder — Media, Judiciary and State,"
Goktas_ had revealed how the Istanbul Police Department ignored
warnings from the Trabzon Police Department about Dink’s murder.

The Armenian-Turkish Dink was editor-in-chief of the bilingual Agos
daily until he was killed on Jan. 19, 2007. On the third anniversary
of the assassination, his family, friends and rights organizations
once again voiced anger that light has still not been shed on the
journalist’s murder. A majority of the suspects, including the hit
man, are from Trabzon, where police say they had informed the Istanbul
police about the plot to kill Dink on more than one occasion.

"Then Intelligence Chief Ramazan Akyurek and the Istanbul Police
Department filed a criminal complaint against me for publishing
the document. This document showed how Hrant Dink was going to be
murdered and [proved that] police knew it beforehand. It shows that
a group headed by Yasin Hayal was to kill Dink," Goktas said in his
own defense.

Goktas_, who is facing a three-to-five-year prison sentence, also
said Akyurek did not take steps to prevent the murder.

Meanwhile, 19 police officers, including Akyurek, that were charged
with negligence in the investigation into the Dink assassination have
been cleared by a report drafted by Interior Ministry investigators.

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