Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Turkish police detain politician for questioning

Mar. 25 2007
Source: Associated Press

ISTANBUL, Turkey -- Turkish police late Sunday detained a right-wing politician for interrogation in connection with the killing of an ethnic Armenian journalist, a news channel reported.

The police detained Yasar Cihan, head of the local branch of the conservative and nationalist Great Unity party in the Black Sea port city of Trabzon, private NTV television reported.

The detention came several hours after Patriarch Mesrob II, the spiritual head of the Armenian Orthodox community in Turkey, on Sunday criticized authorities for failing to find those who ordered the killing of the journalist Hrant Dink.

Dink was killed outside his paper, Agos, in Istanbul on Jan. 19. Prosecutors have pressed charges against 10 suspects, including some former members of the youth wing of Great Unity.

According to NTV, police were still looking for another leading member of Great Unity, Halis Egemen.

Dink's killing prompted international condemnation as well as debate within Turkey about free speech, and whether state institutions were tolerant of militant nationalists.

Dink, the 52-year-old editor of the bilingual Agos newspaper, had been brought to trial numerous times for allegedly "insulting Turkishness,'' a crime under Turkey's penal code.

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.



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