The trial of the the suspects of the bomb attack in Ankara on 10 October 2015, which the Islamic State (IS) group never officially claimed responsibility for, that killed 101 people and caused many more injuries started on Monday.
The trial began amid extra safety precautions outside the court. Both the families of the victims and the witnesses who gave statements at the trial claimed that the gas bombs fired by police just after the explosion also caused several deaths. The panel of judges was asked to punish all the civil servants who were responsible on the day by the prosecution.
The Turkish Medical Association (TTB) reported that the gas canisters that were fired caused several deaths, Ali Karacay, one of the claimants, cited. “After the attack, we were trying to help our injured friends. Then the police fired gas bombs on the shattered bodies of people. It is no different to what IS do,” he said.
“It has been 18 months since the Suruc massacre happened, in which 32 young activists were killed; only one civil servant was fined 7,500 Turkish Liras (approximately 2,000 dollars). 101 people died on 10 October, our first application to the courts was rejected. The government had said ‘give us 400 lawmakers and we will give you peace’ in the 7 June elections. Don’t they have any responsibility in these incidents?” Karacay asked.
Erdogan Tedik, father of victim Korkmaz Tedik also gave a statement to the court.
“It is no coincidence the bombings happened just before the elections. Over a hundred people died, over 400 people were injured. We went there to stop the chaos and atmosphere of war in the country, we went there to have peace. This a political case rather than a criminal one,” Tedik said.
The father of another victim, Salih Aydeniz, said that there were no serious injuries on his daughter’s body, instead saying “she suffered from asthma, she died due to the gas.”
The lawyers for the victim’s families have demanded to extend the case’s scope and include politicians, the police commissioner and intelligence service officers who are responsible for the incidents.
What happened on 10 October 2015?
A peace rally titled “peace, democracy and labour meeting” was organised by the call of non-governmental organisations and trade associations after 34 people died in the Suruc attack.
Two Islamic State militants attacked the rally and 101 people lost their lives.
The Ankara courthouse ordered Esin Altintug, the wife of the taxi driver Halil Ibrahim Durgun who allegedly brought the suicide bombers to Ankara, be remanded.