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POLITICS > Turkish history body ‘profiling’ scholars working on Armenian issue: Report

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TTK chief Metin Hülagü denied that the body had been “profiling” scholars. AA Photo

TTK chief Metin Hülagü denied that the body had been “profiling” scholars. AA Photo

The Turkish Historical Society (TTK) has been “profiling” scholars and students working on the Armenian issue, weekly Agos has reported.

According to the report, the TTK demanded the names, contact information and area of study of PhD and master’s degree students from the Higher Education Board (YÖK).

TTK chief Metin Hülagü denied that the body had been “profiling” scholars, but admitted that they gathered information on academic work.

“This fabricated story is an urban legend. They don’t use the real meaning of ‘profiling.’ As the TTK we never profile, we are an academic institution. Profiling is a hot topic these days and somebody wants us to be a part of it,” Hülagü told the Hürriyet Daily News.

“As the TTK, we carry out these works in cooperation with universities and we release some researchers’ books,” he said, adding that the work of his society was to focus on all kinds of subjects, including the Armenian issue.

However, two academics, who spoke to the Daily News on condition of anonymity, said they were not surprised that their information had been sought by official bodies, but added that the TTK’s involvement was surprising.

“As university researchers, we already knew that YÖK was doing profiling about those of us who were doing research on the Armenian issue, but we are really surprised to hear that TTK was also involved,” said one Turkish historian.

He added that in recent years many young Turkish historians had been conducting research on the Armenian issue, but had concerns about their future career in Turkey because of their chosen research topic.

“The young generation of Turkish historians wants to break the ‘Armenian taboo’ [in Turkey],” he said, urging Turkey to face “the reality” and leave behind “100 years of denial politics.”

Another historian, a 35-year-old currently completing his doctorate degree in the Netherlands, said he had moved out of Turkey because of such concerns.

“I couldn’t continue researching in an atmosphere like that,” he said.

Vercihan Ziflioğlu from the Istanbul office contributed to this report

December/13/2013

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turkic voice

12/17/2013 10:24:26 AM

@jean Rocko thanks for your input here we need more people like you contributing to these discussions, together by simple conversations we can avoid sad and dark chapters in the future. history is full of lessons for us all. Merry Christmas to you my friend.

jean Rocko

12/16/2013 6:52:02 AM

As an Armenian American I can only say God Bless all the Turkish people out there that have picked up a Torch and lit it. I remember my Grandmother telling me when I was just a kid "Chojoohum don't hate the Turkish people, there were so many that gave up everything just to save us." And now I'm seeing that blood reemerge. One Professor once said in my Political History class in College "Who here believes 100% in our gov?" Hands went up and I remember him saying "I feel sorry for all of you"

mara mcglothin

12/15/2013 4:20:25 PM

CEZER Far to civilized notion of actually studying what happened. Just imagine.

Turk Uzan

12/14/2013 11:09:39 AM

@ Greg, I can only laugh at your limited knowledge of history and the events of 1915. If Talaat etc really targeted all those of questionable ancestry. Not only Armenians but every single other minority would have been deported. Not just Armenians in the east but also those in the west and the Kurds etc etc. Face your own history and stop blaming the Turkish republic for something that you claim has happened a 100 years ago in an Empire that doesn't exist anymore.

Turk Uzan

12/14/2013 11:06:41 AM

@ Chuck Maki, Unlike the Armenian archives, the Turkish/Ottoman archives are open and have been open for a long time now. We are waiting for Armenia to do the same .. but just like they refuse to go to the ICJ they also refuse to open their archives. They'd rather not be exposed since the "We Armenians were 100% innocent Christians, unarmed and did nothing wrong at all to justify deportation and the barbarian Turks targeted us out of the blue" argument works far better for them.

Turk Uzan

12/14/2013 11:03:04 AM

@ Hakan Osman, Yes it did .. it was a 100 years ago it was a time of war and the betrayal was met with an appropriate response. If anything the Ottomans were late in the deportation. Armenians (or more precise the Dashnak and their supporters) has been massacring Turkish (mostly) Kurdish and other Muslim villages from 1870 onwards. It wasn't a fight for independence, they never owned that land. It was systematic ethnic cleansing of the area to create a greater Armenia. They failed. Deal with it

turkic voice

12/14/2013 1:02:26 AM

@ Hakan Osman I would like you to justify for me why the Turkish and Kurdish and Azerbaijani citizen deserved to die at the hands of the Armenians and Russians and French invading forces aiming to set up a independent state. at a time when turkey was being attacked from all sides why were they Terrorised like this??? what did these citizens do to deserve this? or is there deaths just ridicules to you is it Hakan??

turkic voice

12/14/2013 12:49:25 AM

no theory's no conspiracy no denial, Armenians revolted and used terrorist acts, no one just gets relocated for no reason, every reaction is to a action. the area was a war zone, Armenians simply were striving for independence by any means possible and Terror was won of those. why don't people acknowledge that it was a disaster of a situation and all suffered atrocity's if you play fair then so can I.

turkic voice

12/14/2013 12:37:04 AM

independence is not won by acts of TERROR against a state as the Armenians had attempted. TERRORISIM must not be condoned, the Israelis and Armenians are not the same Israelis did not kill and terrorise the Nazi. The Armenians killed and murdered across eastern turkey killing babies, children, men and women and the elderly of Turks Kurds and Azeri these are not justification these are facts, where is the justice for these people??? not a deportation borders were not crossed it was a relocation

cezer "çapulcu" skonore

12/14/2013 12:27:15 AM

turkic voice: We cannot bring democracy to Turkey, which all of us want to see, if we do not objectively study and understand our past. We may discover some embarrassing things, but without that I cannot see how we can establish a true democracy. Many democratic nations have faced and corrected certain things from their past.
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