"Paris attack may have targeted a meeting at Kurdish cultural center"
As protests erupted in neighborhoods of Paris on Friday after a deadly attack on a Kurdish cultural center, members of the Kurdish community shouted slogans against the Turkish government, and the police fired tear gas to disperse groups.
Journalist Fehim Tastekin said that Kurds in Paris have not been convinced by official statements that the attack had been carried out with "racist motives."
Speaking to Duvar, Tastekin said he has talked with several people in the neighborhood where the attack took place, and many expressed doubts that the suspect acted on merely racist motives.
He noted that a commemoration for the three Kurdish women activists assassinated in Paris on 9 January 2013 was in planning, and that a meeting for preparations had been scheduled to be held in the Kurdish cultural center that has been the target of the recent deadly attack.
"I've been told that the time of the meeting was changed. The officials at the cultural center suspect that the scheduled meeting was the target of the attack," Tastekin said.
Infuriated by the attack Kurds have started staging protests, and the protesters accuse Turkey for the attack, with the memory of the 2013 assassination of three Kurdish women activists still vivid, Tastekin added.
"They also accuse the French authorities, because an effective investigation had not been carried out after the 2013 assassinations, and the role of the intelligence agencies in that incident remained a question mark. There is a strong belief that Turkey was protected by French authorities. And it is not only refugees from Turkey who think that the role of Turkey in that incident had not been thoroughly investigated. Many French people and journalists think likewise. So I can say a parallel is drawn between that incident and the recent attack."
On 9 January 2013, three Kurdish women activists, Sakine Cansiz, Leyla Saylemez and Fidan Dogan were assassinated at the office of the Kurdistan Information Centre in the 10th arrondissement of Paris by a man who would later be captured and identified as Omer Guney.
Guney died in December 2016 of a brain tumor, and the case was closed, although there were solid evidences which suggested that he may have acted on instructions of some state officials in Turkey.