Zirve murder suspect threatens chief judge

Zirve murder suspect threatens chief judge

MALATYA - Doğan News Agency
Zirve murder suspect threatens chief judge

The suspects in the Zirve Massacre trial are brought to the courthouse in the eastern province of Malatya amid intense security measures. DHA photo

A suspect in the ongoing Zirve Massacre case threatened to kill the chief judge during yesterday’s hearing.

Varol Bülent Aral, a suspect on trial for the murder of three missionaries in the eastern province of Malatya in 2007, argued with the judge for not being allowed to direct questions to the witnesses. Aral continued his protest, although Chief Judge Hayrettin Kısa said he would be allowed to speak once the testimony was over. When Kısa ordered gendarmerie forces to remove Aral from the courtroom, he shouted: “Down with your justice, you crooks. You will pay for this. Hayrettin Kısa, I will shoot you in the head.”

The hearing continued after the incident with the testimonies of some suspects.

Three missionaries, German citizen Tillman Geske and two Turks, Necati Aydın and Uğur Yüksel, were tied up and tortured before their throats were slit at the Zirve Publishing House, a Christian publisher in the eastern province of Malatya, on April 18, 2007.

Five young men, age 19 and 20 at the time of the killings, confessed to the murder and were arrested for the crime. However, authorities have continued to investigate the case, which is believed by many to be an act of the “deep state,” rather than a group of independent fanatics.