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Two Turkish soldiers jailed in connection with journalist's death

The soldiers have been found guilty of ignoring information that may have helped to prevent the murder of a prominent ethnic Armenian journalist in 2007.

A demonstrator holds a placard that reads:
A demonstrator holds a placard that reads: "We are all Hrant Dink" during a protest in Istanbul following his murder.
Image: SERKAN SENTURK/AP/Press Association Images

TODAY A TURKISH COURT sentenced two military officers to six months in prison for ignoring intelligence that may have prevented the killing of a prominent ethnic Armenian journalist, the state-run news agency reported.

Hrant Dink, chief editor of the minority Armenian Agos newspaper, was fatally shot by an alleged hardline nationalist teenager outside his office in Istanbul on 19 January 2007. He had received death threats because of his comments about perhaps the darkest episode of Turkey’s history – the massacres of Armenians during World War I.

The teenager and two other suspects are on trial in Istanbul for Dink’s murder.

The court in Trabzon, northern Turkey, found Colonel Ali Oz, a former gendarmerie commander, and Captain Metin Yildiz guilty of neglecting their duties, the Anatolia news agency reported. Four other officials were each given four-month sentences.

The officers were accused of not acting on intelligence indicating that one of the three suspects now on trial, Yasin Hayal, was planning to kill Dink.

The officers, who denied any wrongdoing, were expected to appeal their convictions.

- AP

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