World Bulletin / News Desk
Abdülkadir Aygan, a former member of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and later a member of the illegal gendarmerie unit known as JİTEM, shared his knowledge about 117 murders by JİTEM in a testimony he sent to Turkish prosecutors.
Among JİTEM victims are former Diyarbakır Police Chief Ali Gaffar Okkan, 33 Turkish soldiers killed in Bingöl in 1993 and former Diyarbakır Bar Association Chairman Mustafa Özer, according to Aygan.
Two Diyarbakır specially authorized prosecutors working through the Swedish Justice Ministry in October 2010 sent Aygan some 70 questions pertaining to deaths and disappearances in the Southeast that are believed to have been perpetrated by JİTEM members in the '90s. Aygan responded to questions from the prosecutors in a 21-page testimony. The testimony is now being reviewed by the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor's Office, which says it will contribute to efforts to shed light on unsolved murders.
Aygan has spoken to the media at length about JİTEM's reign of terror on several occasions, but the Diyarbakır Prosecutor's Office notes that this is his first formal testimony on the atrocities that occurred in the region.
In his testimony, Aygan told about the killing of 117 people by JİTEM. He said he burst into tears when recalling the murders as he answered prosecutors' questions. He also said he will make statements about former Prime Minister Tansu Çiller and former President Süleyman Demirel in the future.
There is an ongoing trial in Diyarbakır into alleged JİTEM murders.
The 16 suspects in the JİTEM trial are being accused of multiple murders, arson and bomb attacks in Diyarbakır, Mardin, Batman and Şırnak. A Diyarbakır court also issued a warrant for Aygan's arrest, as he is a suspect in the trial. Sweden has refused to extradite Aygan, whom the Diyarbakır Public Prosecutor's Office accuses of crimes against the integrity of the state and playing a role in the murder of Kurdish writer Musa Anter, as well as an attack that wounded Orhan Miroğlu, a Kurdish intellectual.
Aygan spoke to the Cihan news agency about his testimony, recalling that he has been talking to Turkish prosecutors about JİTEM murders for many years.
"They have finally heard my voice. They did not come [to Sweden] to interrogate me, but sent me questions. Now I have fulfilled my responsibilities. Even if I do not want to remember what happened in the past, I needed to tell them what I knew [about JİTEM deaths]. I responded to the prosecutors' questions in five hours," he stated.
Last Mod: 07 Şubat 2011, 17:24