Police investigate ‘suspicious’ death of chief expert at TÜBİTAK

Police investigate ‘suspicious’ death of chief expert at TÜBİTAK

Police investigate ‘suspicious’ death of chief expert at TÜBİTAK

Police have launched a probe into the “suspicious” death of a researcher at the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK), who was found dead in her house in Istanbul’s Tuzla district. 

The 37-year-old Dilek Dündar Erbahar is alleged to have committed suicide by drinking insecticide, but the real cause of her death will be announced after an autopsy.

Having done research on toxic gas sensors, Erbahar was recently nominated for a UNESCO award for women scientists below the age of 40. 

According to media reports, her relatives found her body and called the police on Oct. 30.
She reportedly left a note before her death which said, “I love you so much,” to her husband, Doğan Erbahar, whom she was about to divorce. 

Doğan Erbahar, a researcher at the Gebze Technical University, told daily Hürriyet on Nov. 2 that he wants to bring a confidentiality order on the case in order to protect their daughter throughout the case. 
Her family rejected allegations that she committed suicide, saying that they are waiting for the result of the autopsy. 

Erbahar, who completed a PhD in 2012 at Gebze Technical University, was working for the research center of TÜBİTAK for nearly 15 years. 

She was working as a chief expert at the center’s sensor technologies department.

TÜBİTAK, whose goal is to develop “science, technology and innovation” policies, was founded in 1963 as an autonomous public institution. More than 2,500 researchers work at 15 different institutions affiliated with TÜBİTAK.