Anti-Armenian Acts on the Rise in Turkey

Graffiti on the wall of St. Mary's Church in Istanbul says '1915, a blessed year'

ISTANBUL—Anti-Armenian hate speech graffiti appeared on the walls of an Armenian church, around the same time as the Mayor of Ankara called Armenians “disgusting.” All this ahead of the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

The St. Mary’s (Sourp Astvadzadzin) Church in the Bakirköy neighborhood of Istanbul was desecrated with hate speech graffiti that read “1915, a blessed year,” reported Today’s Zaman newspaper.

Another message on the church was read: “What does it matter if you are all Armenian when there is already one Ogün Samast,” referring to the convicted killer of Hrant Dink, after whose death many Turks took to the streets with placards that read “We are all Dink. We are all Armenian.”

Another insciption on the church wall reads: 'What does it matter if you are all Armenian when there is already one Ogün Samast'

Today’s Zaman wrote that its reporter visited the site on Wednesday morning and found that the graffiti had been painted over. But an administrator at the church said, “This type of thing happens all the time.” The Armenian Patriarchate of Istanbul refused to comment on the matter. No criminal complaint has been filed.

The incident comes hot on the heels of another racist slur against Armenians in Turkey. It was reported on Tuesday that Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek had filed a criminal complaint against Turkish-Armenian journalist Hayko Bagdat on defamation charges after Bagdat posted lighthearted tweets on his Twitter account referring to the mayor as an Armenian after the March 2014 local elections.

Gökçek appears to believe it an insult to be called an Armenian as his lawyer petitioned the Ankara Prosecutor’s Office, saying, “The statements [by Bagdat] are false and include insult and libel.”

Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek

Ankara mayor says being called an “Armenian” is an insult
Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek has filed a criminal complaint against Turkish-Armenian journalist Hayko Bagdat on defamation charges, after the latter jokingly posted tweets referring to him as an Armenian after the March 2014 local elections.

According to the Diken website and the state-run Anadolu news agency, Gökçek’s petition to the Ankara Prosecutor’s Office stated that Bagdat, who has more than 300,000 followers on Twitter, wrote a series of posts in the wake of Gökçek’s victory in last year’s March elections. One of Bagdat’s messages said: “It is official; they gave the capital city to an Armenian. What a shame!” according to the petition.

The petition also said a Twitter hashtag “melihgökçekermeniymis” (Melih Gökçek turns out to be Armenian) was allegedly used by Bagdat in his tweets on the social media website.

Gökçek’s lawyer said in the petition that the mayor is “a citizen of the Turkish Republic who loves his country and his nation” and that Bagdat is aware of this. “The statements [by Bagdat] are false and include insult and libel,” the petition said.

In addition, the mayor filed a lawsuit with the court claiming that he was insulted by being called “Armenian.”

Gökçek also sued Bagdat in civil court, demanding compensation of 10,000 liras for psychological damages. Bagdat announced the lawsuit on Twitter, saying: “Turns out Melih Gökçek sued me demanding 10,000 liras for calling him “Armenian, dude. We are going to have so much fun.”


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  1. Kira said:

    This vile pig should look at himself in the mirror more often. He is the epitome of disgusting.
    Please do the wolrd a favor and kill yourself gokcek.

  2. Edward M. said:

    Barberic behavior like these can be expected from Turks who possess the same mentality as the genocide perpetrator ancestors they glorify so much. Its not just the government of Turkey who is responsible for maintaining denialist and fabricator approach to their history to cover up crimes, it is also the smaller factions and city leaders who are culprits in the game of denial.
    Knowing the true history of Genocide these kind of barbarians will not rest easy to let Armenians get justice. They will only keep up with us by means of not the truth but by the dirty games of politics, black mailing, and cooking up their own version. And in this case they don’t really deny the genocide, but up front they justify it.
    Weather denial or justification, those in Turkey who hate Armenians they do that unconditionally because it was conditioned in their psychi and inherited from the generation before.
    But, acts like these also shows how racist the anti-Armenian Turkish nationalists have got that they resort to insult and negative verbal opinions about a whole national identity. And this racism can follow its roots to the Hamidian massacres and The Young Turks.

  3. State-Of-Emergency said:

    Maybe an isolated event, but nevertheless the perpetrator must be punished. This is similar to anti-Semitic and other hate crimes that occur everyday all around the world. It’s no so much what the individual vandal does, it’s more about how the authorities react and enforce their anti-discrimination laws. If Turkey turns a blind eye, then it becomes an accomplice and must be exposed as such.

  4. Vindicated Man said:

    It’s a non-stop hate campaign, organized and sponsored by the criminal state. It is being supported by nearly everyone there. If the example with the MAYOR OF THEIR CAPITAL doesn’t convince somebody, then I don’t know what will. This is DISGUISED FASCISM.

  5. Norin said:

    Dear Patriarche of Istanbul, complicity and brown nosing by refusing to comment and file complaints on such matter won’t curry you any favor with mongrel Turks just like it didn’t get you anything in 1915. These Istanbulian Armenians need to either grow a pair or get the hell out of Turkey.

    • masis chalabian said:

      shame one you communist slave istanbul much better than yerevan for living economy money is here slavery is in yerevan

  6. Satenik said:

    That mayor,who thinks he is a citizen of Turkey,should take his head out of his posterior and realise that the country he calls his home is Greek and Armenian lands. The smart Alec should also reflect (I know it is difficult for him to do that)and ask what happened to the inhabitants of that land….did they all go on a one way ticket holidaying in Bahamas or elsewhere? Time is catching up with you ddnialist murderers…..and all the other so called “civilised” countries who have been dragging their feet and not recognising the Armenian genocide. We know who they are and why they deny it….just look at their own brutal and bloody history and their track records in enslaving, occupying and duplicity….Although they have so many evidence and they know that Armenian genocide is a fact because they were also party to it ,hence the shameful denial. They are no different from the denialist Turks…they are the ones who will go to Turkey on tbe 24th April. Remember this! Know who your “friends”are. We don.t need their empty talks and lies…we want tbem to act and if tbey don.t do that they can go to hell , satan needs more playmates!

    • GeorgeMardig said:

      The more Turkey denies, the more the name of Turkey is tarnished worldwide

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