State Audit Board to Investigate Sivas Massacre

BIANET 2.12.2012 – President Abdullah Gul assigned the Turkish State Audit Board for the investigation of Sivas Massacre, events of July 2, 1993 which resulted in the deaths of 37 people, mostly Alevi intellectuals.

President’s Media Office released a statement saying that President Gul assigned Turkish State Audit Board to investigate on the causes and consequences of the 1993 Sivas Massacre, which left 37 people dead.

“A sense of ambiguity and suspicion amid all involving sides in 1993 Sivas Massacre is still present to this day, creating challenges for the understanding of the tragedy’s consequences. Previously, 114 NGOs based in Sivas Province brought the issue to our presence and requested a new investigation. Mr. President assigned the state audit board to thoroughly investigate the causes and consequences of the issue on Turkish society,” the statement said.

What happened?

Initially, 124 suspects were arrested related to the killings of 37 people in 1993. The 7 year long trial resulted with 33 suspects convicted of death penalty and 85 other to serve in prison to a period of 2 to 15 years, and 37 others being released. 33 death penalty were commuted to life sentence in 1999 following reforms on Turkish constitution.

In 2004, a criminal court issued a parole on 7 inmates who were charged with 7 years and 6 months of imprisonment for “attempting to change the constitutional regime by force”. Benefitting from the revisions in the Turkish Criminal Law, three other inmates were released on parole later on. In March, remaining few suspects were released because the statute of limitations has run out. (ÇT)