Odisha News Insight

Turkish Prosecutor freed from Extremists dies

Turkish prosecutor diedThe Turkish prosecutor who was freed from extremists on Tuesday succumbed to his injuries sustained while he was held hostage, according to media reports.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that the prosecutor, Mehmet Selim Kiraz, was hit by three gunshots in his head and two in his body, according to a Xinhua report.

Kiraz was taken hostage at an Istanbul courthouse earlier on Tuesday by members of the far-left Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), which had been listed as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the European Union (EU) and the US.

Kiraz was freed and three of the assailants killed later by the police, according to an earlier report, which said that the prosecutor was injured.

Selami Altinok, the head of the Istanbul police department said that the security forces decided to intervene when the gunshots were heard from the prosecutor’s office during negotiations with the hostage-takers.

Altinok added that negotiations with the militants had been going on for six hours.

“Unfortunately during a phone conversation with the militants, gunshots were heard from Kiraz’s office and the teams started their operation to save the prosecutor,” he pointed out.

Kiraz was rushed to the hospital after he was freed and taken for surgery, the police official said. However, the prosecutor could not be saved.

According to the Hurriyet Daily News, Kiraz was investigating the death of 14-year-old Berkin Elvan on March 11, last year, 269 days after he was sent into a coma, struck by a tear-gas canister during a protest in Istanbul. The incident had sparked a wave of indignation in Turkey.

The extremists had demanded that the police officers suspected of killing the teenager should be made to confess their “crime” and prosecuted.

They had also demanded the acquittal of all people being tried for participation in solidarity rallies for Elvan, according to reports. (IANS)

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