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Turks Sacked In Killer Video Probe


Reuters
Two Turkish security officials lost their jobs on Monday in a widening investigation into video footage that appeared to portray as a hero the teenage killer of a prominent Turkish-Armenian editor.

The state-run Anatolian news agency said authorities in the Black Sea city of Samsun had sacked a fifth policeman and transferred a fifth member of the paramilitary gendarmerie to other duties following similar dismissals last Friday. It said the dismissals were made at the request of a government inspector but gave no further information.

The video footage showed Ogun Samast, 17, posing in front of a Turkish flag with security officials shortly after his arrest last month on suspicion of killing the editor Hrant Dink outside his newspaper office in Istanbul. He has confessed to the crime.

Dink's funeral drew 100,000 mourners onto the streets in protest at the militant nationalism that apparently inspired his killer. Seven others have also been charged in the Dink case. Dink had infuriated Turkish nationalists by urging Turkey in his writings to face up to its responsibility for the mass killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks in 1915.

The video footage has revived fears in Turkey of a shadowy "deep state" working in collusion with criminal gangs. The "deep state" is code for hardline nationalists purportedly based in the security forces who are ready to break the law if need be in defense of their ideology.

Last week, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, under pressure in an election year for failing to combat crime, vowed to tackle what he called "gangs within state institutions".
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