Sunday, February 04, 2007

Turkish security officials removed from office over inappropriate TV image of journalist murder suspect

February 03, 2007
Source: Xinhua

Four police officers and four gendarmery officers were removed from offices in Turkey's northern city of Samsun on Friday, over footage showing some security troops posing for "souvenir pictures" with the alleged murderer of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink.

According to the semi-official Anatolia news agency, the Turkish Interior Ministry announced its decision to dismiss four police officers in Samsun where Ogun Samast, 17, the alleged murderer of Dink, was arrested.

Furthermore, the Gendarme General Command also transferred four of its staff, said the report.

Anatolia reported that this happened after private TGRT television channel broadcast on Thursday night a video footage showing Samast, who has confessed to the murder of the journalist, posing in front of a Turkish flag, flanked by some uniformed security officials.

The images and footage were taken at the anti-terror department in Samsun, where Samast was arrested 32 hours after Dink was shot dead outside his newspaper offices in Istanbul on Jan. 19, it was reported.

The footage had emerged as an embarrassment for Samsun security forces, which were accused by the press as having treated Samast the murderer as a "hero."

During a weekly press briefing in Ankara, the spokesman of the Security Directorate General Ismail Caliskan said a probe had been launched to find out by whom or why the video footage and images were shot.

Caliskan added that inspectors of the interior ministry have been carrying out an investigation in northern cities of Trabzon, Samsun, Istanbul and Ankara.

Hrant Dink, a 53-year-old Turkish citizen of Armenian descent, was well-known for writing controversial articles about the alleged Armenian genocide by Ottoman Turks during World War I and had received a six-month suspended sentence.

Dink had received threat from nationalists who considered him as a traitor. Turkish officials said that they have charged seven people over the murder of Dink.

Note: Above are excerpts from the article. The full article appears here. Clarifications and comments by me are contained in {}. Deletions are marked by [...]. The bold emphasis is mine.



Post a Comment

<< Home