Thousands will commemorate slain journalist Hrant Dink in Istanbul

Thousands will commemorate slain journalist Hrant Dink in Istanbul
A+ A-
The Armenian journalist who was gunned down by a Turkish ultranationalist 16 years ago, will be commemorated at the scene of the murder

Hrant Dink, an Armenian journalist in Turkey who was shot dead in front of his office by an ultranationalist teenager on Jan 19. 2007, will be commemorated on the 16th anniversary of his assassination.

Thousands are set to gather and call for justice at 3:00 p.m. local time where Dink was murdered, as they did the pervious years since the killing of the minority rights defender.

Hrant Dink, the editor-in-chief of Istanbul’s bilingual weekly Agos newspaper was gunned down in broad daylight outside Agos’ offices on Halaskargazi Avenue by Ogun Samast, a Turkish ultranationalist.

Then 17-year-old Samast who shot Dink three times in the head at close range, was sentenced to 22 years in prison in 2011.

After a 14-year long trial process, an Istanbul court in 2021 also convicted 26 defendants including government security officials over their involvement in Dink’s assassination. The court sentenced four of the defendants to life imprisonment and two to aggravated life imprisonment, however, the links between the deep state officials and the gunman have left the ruling unsatisfactory in terms of justice.

According to Hrant Dink’s family, Turkish courts have punished “the leakage, not the evil itself”.

Since the murder, human rights activists in Turkey call the authorities to find and punish the real instigators.

Dink, advocating a reconciliation between Turkey and the Armenians, faced several lawsuits on the charges of “insulting Turkishness” over his articles and received numerous death threats from Turkish nationalists until his assassination.

”I feel like a pigeon,” Hrant Dink wrote in his last article that was penned days before the murder.

“Like a pigeon I wander uneasily amidst this city, watching my back constantly, so timid and yet, so free.”

More than 100,000 people gathered to say farewell to the Armenian journalist in his funeral.