The trial of the the suspects of the Ankara twin-bomb attack in 2015, which killed 101 people and was blamed on the Islamic State (IS) group, entered its third day on Thursday.
The suspects, including several police officers accused of attacking and firing tear gas at the victims following the double explosion, were in the dock.
The hearing began with testimonies from the victims’ families. Lawyers representing victims’ families demanded that the court issue punishments for all the public servants, (police officers) on duty in the area on the day of the attack for negligence.
The most damning statement came from Caglayan Bozaci, the son of one of the victims, who said, “I don’t blame the government for neglecting people’s safety, the government did what it is always doing; killing people.”
Izzet Cevik, father of a young victim, spoke about peace. “I am from Suruc, I’ve been assimilated but I am Kurdish. Do you know why we need peace? For your children, for you we need peace. We have soldiers, police officers in this country but we don’t have justice. My daughter would have been the first woman civil engineer in our village if she had lived. We will make peace when you testify against the powers behind you. We will make peace when you help us to uncover them.”
Fatma Hatice Atilgan, the sister of eight-year-old victim Veysel Atilgan, said she was appearing at court for her brother and father. “I lost my little brother, he was only eight years old. I lost my father, I am here and I demand that the suspects be punished, including the government.”
Nebahat Ozer, the mother of a young woman injured in the explosion said, “My daughter was in shock after the incident. There were human remains and blood all over her body. I brought her home and tried to wash her. She suddenly started screaming her friends’ names, who died at the blast.”
Insinuating state involvement in the attack, Ozer ironically added, “Thousands of people came out onto the streets during the coup attempt. God knows why there was no blast, Islamic State was on the holiday, I guess.”
“We’ raised conscientious and responsible children. Our children were innocent. I want the minister of interior, the prime minister and the president to be tried,” Ozer said.
The trial continues.
[updates to follow]