Rally in Istanbul on the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink assassination

The Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Şişli District Organization commemorated Hrant Dink with a rally on the 8th anniversary of his assassination. HDP also released a press statement underlining Cizre Police Chief Ercan Demir’s connection with the Dink murder. Several recent murders and disappearances in Cizre have been linked to the police.

At the action organized by the HDP Şişli District Organization, a petition was launched for the name of Ergenekon Street to be changed to Hrant Dink Street. As in previous years, a “Hrant Dink Street” sticker was placed on the “Ergenekon Street” sign. The campaign for the name change will remain open to signatures until April 24, the date commemorated as the beginning of the Genocide, the Istanbul-based Armenian-Turkish Agos daily reports. 

A group of around fifty people unfurled a banner stating “Hrant’la, soykırımla yüzleşin (Time to face Hrant, time to face the Genocide)”, and chanted the slogans, “Kurd, Turk, Armenian / Long live the fraternity of peoples”, “We are all Hrant / We are all Armenian”, marching from Kurtuluş Street to Ergenekon Street.

During the rally, the group replaced the names of street signs by placing stickers, changing Kurtuluş Street as Tatavla Street, Baysungur Street as Konstantin Street, and Ergenekon Street as Hrant Dink Street.

Xunav Altun, District Co-President of the HDP Şişli District Organization, reading out the press statement, reminded that the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink’s passing also corresponded to the 100th anniversary of the Genocide, adding, “For eight years, those who made Hrant Dink into a target, those who prevented a proper investigation and trial, those who turned a blind eye to the murder have remained in power, public officials have been promoted, they have become governors, members of parliament and ministers. This murder was carried out in collaboration by all structures within the state, including the AKP and the Ergenekon organization; and now they are rushing to lay the blame on each other”.

Altun stated that they would not remain silent in the face of this case being used as a trump card in struggles for power, adding that every massacre that was not brought to justice prepared the ground for new massacres: “Cizre Police Chief Ercan Demir, responsible of the murder of 5 children in the Cizre district, is a suspect in the Hrant Dink case due to his position at the Trabzon Intelligence Branch Directorate at the time of the murder.”

“The Genocide continues… Those who claimed that Sevag Balıkçı, who was murdered for being an Armenian while fulfilling his military duty, died because of a joke that went wrong; those who claim that Maritsa Küçük, who was taken from us at her home in Samatya, was killed during a crime of petty larceny, in fact want to murder the truth itself. Our response to those who perceive Armenians as ‘remnants of the sword’ is to broaden our sisterhood and brotherhood, and to cry out the truth. We demand true justice for Hrant, Sevag and Maritsa, the most recent rings in the chain of the Armenian Genocide. We hold light to this darkness that transforms babies into murderers.”

Following the rally and the press statement, the HDP Şişli District Organization made a call to attend the rally on January 19, at 13:30, from Taksim to Agos.

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