by Ferda Çetin
It has been eight years since the Paris murders. Three Kurdish women politicians – Sakine Cansiz, one of the founders of the PKK, the Paris Representative of the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) Fidan Doğan and KNK Youth Movement member Leyla Şaylemez – were assassinated in Paris, France, on 9 January 2013. Murder suspect Ömer Güney died in December 2016 in the hospital where he was being treated in Paris.
The evidence, documents and information relating to the case are abundant. However, investigative prosecutors, court officials and case lawyers have tacitly cooperated in leaving this important information time-barred.
French intelligence is one of the most significant organisational intelligence networks in the world and has the ability to listen in to many states, including the US and Russia. In a report prepared by Le Monde in 2013, it was stated that the huge control mechanism developed by French intelligence was able to illegally record computer communications, telephone conversations and messages, facebook and twitter posts in and outside of France. This collected data was shared with other intelligence organisations.
French Intelligence has attempted to close the case on the Paris murders. The lawyers’ request to declassify information pertaining to Ömer Güney assassination case relating to the three Kurdish politicians was rejected as a result of the intelligence agency’s intervention. The French General Directorate of Foreign Security did not reveal which people Ömer Güney spoke to on the phone or make public the transcript of these conversations in the court file. The court requested this information from the Turkish authorities. However, records of calls made internationally from France and recorded conversations in France could have been provided or requested from thre French intelligence directorate.
Another dark activity is clearly identified in the indictment
Ruhi Semen, the former ‘colleague’ of Ömer Güney in Germany, and his son Ümit Semen, applied to meet with Ömer Güney in Fresnes Prison. French intelligence and the police were informed about this. As has clearly been stated in the indictment, the interview room was equipped with audio listening devices and cameras. This meeting was mentioned in the indictment as follows: “During this meeting, a very understandable document was obtained with the contributions of experts with the noise filtering method, and with the Turkish translator … In addition to using different tricks, it was understood that he gave a piece of paper to Ruhi Semen”.
So what happened after that? One of the ‘world’s most powerful intelligence organizations’ allowed Ruhi Semen to leave with it. Apart from this theatrical disgrace in which French intelligence was involved, apart from the murders committed by Ömer Güney, the crime of attempting to escape was also committed with the participation of Ruhi Semen and his son Ümit Semen. An additional indictment was prepared for the escape planned for Ömer Güney. In the additional indictment, it is stated: “These crimes that were processed in France, Germany and Turkey in 2013 and 2014, and in particular that were processed on 4 January 2014, are not covered by timeout”. The attempted abduction plan makes mention of and clearly states involvement in the countries of Germany and Turkey.
Ömer Güney died, but no lawsuit was filed against Ruhi Semen and Ümit Semen despite knowledge of these plans. Erhan Pekçetin, head of the Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MİT) Domestic Department, and Aydın Günel, head of MİT’s Human Resources and Personnel Department, stated that Ömer Güney was a member of MİT and provided very important information that would change the course of the Paris trial: “After Ömer Güney’s meeting with MİT personnel, he received his return ticket from Ankara to Paris. This ticket has been purchased from Turkish Airlines (THY) agency in Ankara-Yeni Mahalle West Lodging. MİT Head of Department Erhan Pekçetin states that MİT officials and their families live in these lodgings, that there is no entry from outside, so the said THY agency is only opened for the ticket transactions of the MİT officials”.
Pekçetin added that French intelligence had received this information and asked MİT for information about Ömer Güney, but had not responded. According to the information provided by the arrested MİT department heads, the two people who planned the murders with Ömer Güney were MİT Abroad Ethnic Divisive Activities Department member Uğur Kaan Ayık and MİT Overseas PKK Department Operations Branch Manager Oğuz Yüret. After the Paris murders, these two heads of department were rewarded with appointments to top positions by Turkey’s President Erdoğan. It is understood that justice regarding the murders in Paris has been sacrificed to advance commercial interests and political relations between Turkey and France.