Kurdish newspapers bombed

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Kurdish newspapers bombed

The offices in Turkey of Kurdish daily Ozgur Ulke were bombed on the morning of December 3. The first bomb went off in Istanbul at about 3:30am. About five minutes later, the Ankara office was also bombed. The last bomb exploded at the Evrim printing house at about 3:40am.

At the Istanbul office, Ersin Yildiz, a staff member, lost his life. His co-workers Feridun Karakaya, Alisan Onlu Selahattin Bilkaya, Selehattin Kaya and Yildiz Gultekin were seriously injured and taken to the intensive care units of area hospitals. Eyewitnesses said that the explosion caused a fire in the building, and the Kurds who were trying to put out the fire and help their loved ones were arrested by police.

The explosion at the Ankara office has made the building unusable. Damage at the Evrim printing house is estimated at billions of Turkish liras.

These attacks follow a pattern of intimidation to muzzle the voice of Kurds throughout Turkey. To date, some 20 members of Ozgur Ulke, journalists and staff, have been murdered.

Last March Kurdish deputies in the Turkish parliament were stripped of their constitutional immunity and put in prison on flimsy charges. The trial of the eight parliamentarians was scheduled to be adjourned on December 8; the prosecutor has asked for the death penalty against all of them.

Messages of support for Ozgur Ulke can be sent to: American Kurdish Information Network, 2309 Calvert Street NW#3, Washington, DC, 20008, USA.

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