‘Why was Kemal Kurkut shot?’ opposition lawmaker asks in Turkish parliament

Kemal Kurkut was a fine arts student at Malatya University

The killing of Kurdish student Kemal Kurkut by police at the Diyarbakir Newroz celebration on Tuesday has been brought to the Turkish parliament.

Opposition People’s Republican Party (CHP) lawmaker, Sezgin Tanrikulu, put forward questions for Prime Minister Binali Yildirim about the incident.

“Why was he shot dead if the hundreds of police officers there could have apprehended him,” the deputy for Istanbul asked.

Tanrikulu also queried whether the reports of journalists on the spot having their memory cards containing pictures and footage erased were true.

According to an official statement by the Diyarbakir governor, Kurkut was shot dead by police as he ran towards the concert area carrying a knife screaming, “I have a bomb in my bag, I will kill you all!”

Series of photos show Kemal Kurkut’s shooting (Abdurrahman Gok/Dihaber)

Tanrikulu pointed out that images published of the incident showed that Kurkut was naked from the waist up, and although he held a knife in his hand, there were no signs of him carrying explosives as the governor’s statement claimed.

“Why has such a statement, very far from being credible, been issued,” Tanrikulu asked in parliament.

The CHP lawmaker also asked how many police officers had been charged and brought to court in similar incidents.

Critics have called the incident an ‘extra-judicial’ and ‘execution-style’ killing.