Turkish Court Rejects Lawsuit Against ‘Pro Armenian’ Writer

ANKARA (Associated Press)–A Turkish court on Friday dropped a lawsuit against novelist Orhan Pamuk–rejecting a compensation demand by nationalists from the author for claiming that Turkey had killed more than 1 million Armenia’s and more than 30,000 Kurds.

Nationalist lawyer Kemal Kerincsiz and five other nationalists were seeking 6,000 Turkish Lira ($4,500) each from Pamuk accusing him of "insulting–humiliating and making false accusations."

Pamuk was quoted as telling a Swiss newspaper that: "Thirty-thousand Kurds and 1 million Armenia’s were killed in these lands–and nobody but me dares to talk about it."

Kerincsiz had instigated an earlier high-profile court case against Pamuk for the same commen’s–but those charges were dropped earlier this year–under harsh criticism from the European Union–which Turkey hopes to join. Turkey–however–is still trying dozens of journalists or authors for their writings or speeches.

The prosecutor’s office on Friday formally opened a lawsuit against a University of Arizona assistant professor on charges of "insulting Turkishness." The case against Elif Safak–a Turkish citizen–was opened after a court approved the indictment. The case was also initiated by Kerincsiz.

Safak will stand trial because of the words uttered by fictional Armenian characters in her novel "The Bastard of Istanbul" – a book she wrote while she was living in Tucson–Arizona. In the book–an Armenian character refers to "Turkish butchers." No trial date was set.


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