Samast pose put policeman ‘on shelf’

Samast pose put policeman ‘on shelf’

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Samast pose put policeman ‘on shelf’

Kurtaran was photographed with Samast the murderer of Dink after assasination.

The deputy chief of police in the eastern province of Malatya who was photographed with Ogün Samast, the murderer of Turkish Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, after the assassination has been appointed an instructor in a police academy in the central province of Kırşehir.

Yakup Kurtaran’s appointment was evaluated as “demotion in his career,” according a report published yesterday in daily Radikal. 

Kurtaran was serving as a fourth-class police officer in the Black Sea province of Samsun at the time of the murder.

The photograph, taken on Jan. 20, 2007 in a Samsun anti-terror office, showed Kurataran standing with Samast in front of a Turkish flag after the assassination was revealed and sparked reaction.

Kurtaran and other officers were suspended after the photo was revealed and Kurtaran was initially docked one day’s pay for his role in the photo, but the penalty was later rescinded by a Samsun court.

Kurtaran was then appointed as the public security deputy manager in the eastern province of Malatya on March 19 which was an obvious promotion.

The State Supervisory Council (DDK) had prepared a report on the request of President Abdullah Gül. The Coucil stated that Dink was targeted by this “marginal mentality,” pointing to police officers who had posed with Samast.

Following the report Gül gave an instruction for the “assigning Kurtaran to a non-active duty.”