Turkish parliament speaker rejects parliamentary question by CHP on Sivas massacre

Turkish Parliament Speaker İsmail Kahraman

Turkish Parliament Speaker İsmail Kahraman has rejected a parliamentary question by main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) İzmir deputy Zeynep Altıok on the Sivas massacre, in which 34 Alevi intellectuals were burned to death in 1993 inside the Madımak Hotel.

In a tweet on Saturday, Altıok shared her questions on the Madımak massacre, which will be commemorated on Sunday, and a letter from Kahraman’s office declining to pass them to Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ to answer. According to the letter from the parliament speaker, Altıok’s question was rejected due to “personal and lengthy content.”

In her tweet, Altıok mocked Kahraman’s decision, saying “The Sivas Massacre is my personal life! It has become a long [question]! Pardon! …”

In the parliamentary question, Altıok queried the whereabouts of seven out of 38 people who were convicted at the trial. A Turkish court in 2005 reversed its decision to release 13 men convicted in the proceedings; however, seven are still at large.

On July 2, 1993, an angry mob torched the Madımak Hotel, killing 37 people, mostly members of the Alevi sect after a group of people gathered in front of the hotel following Friday prayer to protest left-wing Turkish intellectual Aziz Nesin, who was hated among radical Islamists in Turkey as he had attempted to publish Salman Rushdie‘s controversial novel “The Satanic Verses.” Nesin was able to escape only because the attackers initially failed to recognize him. July 2, 2017

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