With over 42,397 views in just a day after being posted online, a YouTube video   based on a new Turkish song is praising the killing of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink.

“Even child pornography is innocent compared to this,” Gökhan Özgün, a columnist for the Turkish Radikal daily, is quoted as saying.

Today’s Zaman, a newspaper from Turkey, reports

A new song by folksinger İsmail Türüt, which covertly praises the men involved in the assassination of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, has caused anger, resentment and grief throughout much of Turkish society.

Three ministries have also taken action following news stories on the ultra-nationalist song that an anonymous fan used to make a video showing Hrant Dink and Father Andrea Santoro, an Italian priest who was killed in the Black Sea region. The Justice Ministry and the Interior Ministry have started an investigation; meanwhile Minister of Culture and Tourism Ertuğrul Günay issued a stern statement, saying he had read the news reports “in horror.” Günay said the government would do everything within its power to make access to the online video clip impossible.

“The song includes intentional cues to fan feelings of hatred and enmity within society,” Günay observed. The Human Rights Association (İHD) called for a boycott of Türüt and announced that it would be filing a criminal complaint against the singer.

“Is it possible for society to function well as long as people who are bold about praising a cowardly and abject murder are respected in various sections of society and have their own television shows?” questioned journalist Ergun Babahan.


Although the video was produced by a fan, the lyrics of Türüt’s song, written by Ozan Arif, a much-loved poet of the ultra-nationalists, are clearly praising the teenager who shot Hrant Dink on Jan. 17. Türüt denies his song has any racist implications, but references to the names of the teenager and Yasin Hayal, accused of soliciting the hit man, are present in the song — concealed in rather basic wordplay.

The song also makes a clear reference to the Santoro murder. “Stop ringing bells/stop being pro-Armenian/the people won’t swallow that/not in the Black Sea region.” A picture of Father Santoro is shown in the video when Türüt sings the line “Stop ringing bells,” and footage from Dink’s funeral is displayed, in which hundreds of thousands of mourners holding banners reading “We are all Armenian” formed a long procession on the streets of İstanbul. A photo of Dink’s dead body in front of his newspaper Agos is shown as the words of the song “If somebody sells out the motherland/they will immediately die” are being sung.

Meanwhile, Star daily reported that the fan who made the video clip to the song was a Turkish worker living in Vienna.[…]