Former Trabzon police intelligence branch chief Faruk Sarı gave his testimony to Istanbul’s prosecutor as a suspect in the murder case of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink in 2007, the Hurriyet Daily News reports.
The prosecutor had demanded the arrest of Sarı for his role in the “intended murder that took place due to negligence.” However, an Istanbul court decided that Sarı would be tried without arrest on probation on Dec. 24.
Prosecutor Gökalp Kökçü interrogated Sarı on Dec. 24 as part of the ongoing trial. The Dink murder case is being retried after the Interior Ministry allowed the prosecution of several public officials who were accused of negligence in the course of events which ended in the murder.
Dink was assassinated by Ogün Samast, who is serving 22 years and 10 months in a high-security F-type prison, in broad daylight on a busy street outside the office of the bilingual Turkish-Armenian weekly Agos in Istanbul’s Şişli district on Jan. 19, 2007. The assassination caused outrage across the country, sending hundreds of thousands to the streets in mass rallies.
When the prosecutor asked why he did not took any measures to prevent the murder, Sarı responded that he had no information about the murder attempt. The prosecutor sent him to the court, demanding his arrest. The court released Sarı on probation. The investigation into Dink’s murder took a different path after the government launched a fight against the so-called “parallel structure,” which the government uses to refer to the movement of U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen. The Justice Ministry has cleared the way for investigations into nine civil servants accused of negligence in Dink’s murder.