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Turkey: Father who murdered son for being gay pleads guilty

A Turkish man who murdered his son for being gay pleaded guilty but said it was ‘an accident’
A Turkish man from Diyarbakir who murdered his son for being gay pleaded guilty but said it was ‘an accident’

A man who killed his son for being gay in the Kurdish province of Diyarbakır, Turkey, pleaded guilty but said it was ‘an accident.’

The father was charged, along with his two brothers, with the murder of his 17 year-old son, known by initials R.Ç., in a trial has been ungoing for over a year.

‘No father wants to kill their son. It is a matter of accident,’ stated the father’s advocate during the hearing, requesting his client’s release pending trial.

The two other suspects also made a similar request.

The court rejected their requests and ordered that suspects’ will remain under arrest, considering the nature of crime, current evidence, an expert crime report and given the risk that judicial controls systems might be insufficient.

The court will resume its hearing on 15 August.

During a previous hearing on 24 May the father admitted to killing his son, R.Ç, following an argument by ‘accidentally’ shooting him 14 times as well as hitting him his head with a licensed pistol.

The family later on abandoned the son’s dead body on a road.

‘I am supporting my husband. If I knew he was gay, I would kill him,’ R.Ç.’s mother cried in the courtyard after the hearing.

Ömer Akpınar, spokesperson for Turkey’s main LGBT organization, KAOS GL, commented to Gay Star News: ‘You might break a glass by accident but not kill your own son!

‘I was in the 4th hear of R.Ç's case in Diyarbakir and his family was terribly aggressive towards LGBT activists, so much so that we couldn't even enter the courtroom.

‘The Turkish Judiciary System is so reluctant to deal with murders of minorities resulting in justice being postponed in every case until murderers really come up with a good strategy to get around their guilt.

‘R.Ç’s case is an example of the urgent need to have a hate crime law legislated and the need of prosecutors who are really sensitive to LGBT issues.’

This is not the first time that a Turkish family murders a member for being gay, LGBT organizations, including the local Hebûn to the Kurdish province of Diyarbakır, say that many such cases are not even reported.

In 2008, Ahmet Yildiz, a young Kurdish gay man who left Diyarbakir to Istanbul to live his life honestly and openly was murdered by his father for ‘shaming’ the family.

In Feburary 2012, Arif the head of Hebûn, told GSN: ‘There is also the risk that our families will find out about us and our work.

‘None of us are “out” to family members, and we are constantly trying to hide our real selves from them. The younger members sometimes have to stay with friends as to escape from their families.

‘My father would kill me if he found out that I’m gay, he’s a very religious man who has lived in Saudi Arabia for many years.' 

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