Turkish prosecutor asks for arrest of policeman who killed Kurdish student

Series of photos show Kemal Kurkut's shooting

The Diyarbakir Public Prosecutor’s Office has requested the arrest of the policeman who shot university student Kemal Kurkut.

The fine arts student was shot and killed by police ahead of the Newroz celebration in Diyarbakir province on 21 March.

The prosecutor’s office objected to the release of the officer on judicial control after he was referred to court on charges of “shooting with intent to kill.” The prosecutor has also requested secrecy on the investigation.

Lawyers representing the Kurkut family have objected to the broadcast ban on the incident. The Diyarbakir 2nd Magistrates Court had issued a broadcast ban on the grounds of “risk to public peace” and to prevent the “contamination of intelligence and for the suspects to be caught.”

Two officers were taken into custody after images of the shooting surfaced showing that Kurkut could not have been a suicide bomber, an initial claim by police and state officials. Both officers were suspended from duty.

The journalist, Abdurrahman Kurt, who took 26 photos of the incident and hid them from police at the scene after officers forced other reporters to delete footage and images, also appeared in court on Friday to hand over the photos, Dihaber News Agency reported.

Kurkut was shot in the ribcage and heart after police forced him to strip as he tried to enter Newroz Park, where Kurdish New Year celebrations were due to take place.

Human rights organisations have condemned the killing while opposition lawmakers have called it “murder”.