Hrant Dink murder case has regressed, lawyer says ahead of retrial
The case on Hrant Dink’s murder has not advanced but regressed, one of
the lawyers representing the Turkish-Armenian journalist said, as the
retrial is set to start next week, the Hurriyet Daily News reports.
“We are currently much further behind of the starting point of the
trial,” Fethiye Çetin told reporters during a press conference on
Sept. 13, arguing that in the initial trial the indictment already
defined the organization as “terrorist” while in the retrial, this
aspect of the case would be reviewed.
Çetin, who published this month a book about the unknown facts of the
case (“Utanç Duyuyorum: Hrant Dink Cinayetinin Yargýsý,” “I Feel
Ashamed: The Judgment of the Hrant Dink Murder”) explained that the
Supreme Court had defined the motive of the organization as
“political” rather than “terrorist” in its verdict that led to the
retrial of the case.
The Supreme Court of Appeals had overturned the acquittals of top
suspects, including Yasin Hayal, who was charged with being the
instigator of the assassination and the “leader of a terrorist
organization.” Hayal and other suspects such as Erhan Tuncel and Ersin
Yolcu will also be retried.
“According to the Supreme Court, this organization was established in
2004 by Yasin Hayal. It comprises Erhan Tuncel, Ersin Yolcu, Ahmet
Ýskender and Ogün Samast, whom they use as the triggerman of the
murder. […] However it is defined as only established with a political
motive, to punish Hrant Dink,” Çetin said. For a murder to be
considered a “terrorist act,” it would have to be committed with a
clear aim against the state of the public order, according to the
Turkish Penal Code.
“The Supreme Court has made a mistake in its definition of the nature
and the aim of the organization,” Çetin said, adding that it could
take the court many years of trial to rule on the “terror
Dink, the renowned editor-in-chief of Agos, was shot in front of his
office in Istanbul on Jan. 19, 2007.
Following the convictions of Samast and Hayal for the murder, a high
criminal court had dismissed charges related to “armed terrorist
organization.” Later, the Supreme Court verdict defined the acts of
all suspects in the case under “an organization formed to commit
crime” according to the Turkish Penal Code’s Article 220.
Çetin argues in her book that the killing order was given by the
Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MÝT) via an encrypted