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Archive

Will State Intelligence Bring Light into Dink Murder Case?

Erol ÖNDROĞLU
BİA News Center

Today’s 11th hearing in the Hrant Dink muder case at the Istanbul 14th High Criminal Court will be followed by European Union – Turkey Joint Parliamentary Commission co-chair Hélene Flautre and European Parliament Greens Advisor Ali Yurttagül.

International Writers Association PEN board member Eugene Schoulgin and Lin Stensrud and Trine Kleven from PEN Norway will testify as witnesses. Representatives of the Paris Bar Association and the Brussels Bar Association lawyers Vincent Niore, Mathier Brochier and Alexandre Couyoumdjian, who already monitored the case during the previous 2 hearings, will be present as well.
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The Armenian Community of Istanbul: Confronting new challenges and old realities

Edik BAGHDASARYAN and Hrant GADARIGIAN
Azad-Hye Middle East Armenian Portal

During a recent working visit to Istanbul the Editors of ”Hetq” (Edik Baghdasaryan and Hrant Gadarigian) had the opportunity to visit the offices of the ”Agos” newspaper founded by the late Hrant Dink. While there we were able to interview Pakrat Estukyan, the Armenian-language Editor, on a wide-range of topics. Below is a translation of the conversation.

As a result of our meetings with members and organizations of the Bolsahay (Istanbul Armenian) community we’re left with the impression that a certain process of national rejuvenation is taking place. Is this a fair assumption?
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Prosecution for Books about Dink Murder

Erol ÖNDROĞLU
BİA News Center

Up to now, 3 cases have been opened against Milliyet newspaper journalist Nedim Şener on the grounds of his book “The Dink Murder and the Lies of the Intelligence”. Şener faces prison sentence of up to 32 years 6 months in total. The next hearing takes place tomorrow (16 December) at the Istanbul 11th High Criminal Court.

The court is waiting for a reply from the Istanbul 14th High Criminal Court in order to confirm whether the drawings and documents Şener used for his book indeed stem from the Hrant Dink murder file.

Turkish-Armenian journalist and Agos newspaper editor-in-chief Hrant Dink was assassinated on 19 January 2007 in front of the newspaper’s office in Şişli, central Istanbul. Read more »

Writer’s Case Pending for 2 Years

Erol ÖNDROĞLU
BİA News Center

The case against writer Temel Demirer under article 301 of the Turkish Criminal Code (TCK) on “Insulting the Turkish People, Republic of Turkey and Governmental Institutions and Bodies” has been pending for more than 2 years. Demirer is tried on the grounds of his statement “Hrant Dink was not murdered because he was Armenian but because he recognized the genocide”.

Former Ministry of Justice Mehmet Ali Şahin approved of the author’s prosecution, saying that “I will not have anybody call my state a murderer”. At the same time, the Administrative Court struggles to void the Ministry’s approval. Read more »

Discrimination in the Media by Denial of Discrimination

Tolga KORKUT
BİA News Center

Assoc. Dr. Ülkü Doğanay from Ankara University Faculty of Communication is the author of the “Discrimination Framed by the Print Media Research”.* According to Doğanay, the “discrimination denial strategy” is one of the most typical examples for discrimination in the media.

“Embrace diversity, stop discrimination” is the topic of this year’s International Human Rights Day of the United Nations on 10 December. Doğanay told bianet in this context that the denial of discrimination is one of the methods of a “new racism”.
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Decision in Favour of Armenian Agos Newspaper Sparks Hopes

Erol ÖNDROĞLU
BİA News Center

The Şişli (Istanbul) 2nd Magistrate Criminal Court handed down a 8,000 TL (€ 3640) monetary fine to Kenan Celepoğlu on the grounds of electronic mails he sent to the Armenian Agos newspaper which allegedly contained insults, threats and racism.

The lawyers of the weekly newspaper brought a charge against an unidentified person in December 2008. As a result of the investigation Celepoğlu was confirmed to live in Samsun (Black Sea coast) and a case was opened against him under charges of “insult via an oral or written message”. Read more »

Email harasser must pay $5,300 for racist threats against Armenian newspaper, Istanbul court rules

Lou Ann MATOSSIAN
The Armenian Reporter

Minneapolis – Sparking hopes for the Turkish judiciary system, the Sisli (Istanbul) Second Magistrate Criminal Court has convicted a fourth individual of harassing the Istanbul Armenian weekly Agos, reported the BIA News Center on Dec. 15.

Kenan Celepoglu of Samsun was fined 8,000 TL ($5,286) for “insult via an oral or written message” on the grounds of anonymous emails he had sent to Agos. The messages allegedly contained insults, threats, and racist statements.

“It is a positive and hopeful sign for the Turkish judiciary system that this kind of racism and hostile actions are punished without reducing the sentence,” said Agos attorney Fethiye Çetin. “In our opinion, these examples have an intimidating effect [on offenders] and are encouraging for other judges.” Read more »

UN Award for Turkish Caricaturist Firuz Kutal

Bawer ÇAKIR
BİA News Center

The United Nations (UN) awarded Turkish peace and human rights activist and caricaturist Firuz Kutal with the “Political Caricature” price for his work entitled “Peace Doves”. Kutal lives in Norway and criticized the United States of America with his caricature at the time when the USA invaded Iraq despite wide-spread anti-war demonstrations and claimed to “bring peace and democracy”. Read more »

Major new publication on Turkey’s Armenian community explores historic roots, today’s reality

Lou Ann MATOSSIAN
The Armenian Reporter


Minneapolis – Undermining stereotypes about Armenians from within Turkish society, a comprehensive new book published in Istanbul seeks to reintroduce the Armenian community to the Turkish-speaking majority, Nouvelles d’Arménie and Nor Zartonk report.

In Armenians in Turkey: Community, Individual, Citizen, authors Günay Göksu Ozdogan, Fusun Üstel, Karin Karakasli, and Ferhat Kentel explore Armenians’ deep roots in the land of Ararat, prejudices against Armenians, community life today, and the construction of Armenian identity in contemporary Turkey, among other topics. A moody black-and-white image by noted photographer Ara Güler graces the cover.
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Adana Massacres, 1909 Focus of Istanbul Workshop

Roland MNATSAKANYAN

Sabanci University (Istanbul) just hosted an international workshop entitled “Adana: 1909: History, Memory, and Identity from a Hundred Year Perspective ” ( 6-7 November 2009). The workshop included scholars from the USA, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Italy and Turkey. The event was sponsored by Gomidas Institute (London), Sabanci University, Istanbul Bilgi University History Department, the International Hrant Dink Foundation, and Bogazici University History Department. A capacity audience filled the lecture theatre and included professors, students, journalists and members of the public. There was simultaneous translation between English and Turkish. The papers that were presented will be published in English and Turkish editions.

In their opening remarks, Cengiz Aktar and Ara Sarafian welcomed the participants and pointed to new opportunities for holding such meetings in Turkey today. They explained that the Adana 1909 workshop was organised to mark the centennial of the Adana massacres. It began with a call for papers in Turkish, Armenian and English, and the presentations at the workshop reflected the different interests of participants.

The first paper was an unusual one, as it was a discussion of Turks who saved Armenians in 1909. The fact that Armenian were massacred was a given, and the speaker presented a sensitive examination of righteous Turkish officials who saved potential victims. The speaker used Ottoman records to show how Ottoman Armenians petitioned the state to recognise one such Turkish official for his role in saving an entire community. This first paper took some of the sting out of the workshop, where the audience could sympathise with the Armenian victims of 1909 without vilifying “Muslims” or “Turks” as single categories. Subsequent papers followed with the same sensitivity.
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