Richard Lea writing in The Guardian Monday January 28, 2008
According to reports in the Turkish press, the author of international bestsellers including My Name is Red was targeted as part of a campaign to sow chaos in preparation for a military coup, scheduled for 2009.
The suspects have now been remanded in custody, among them retired military officers and the lawyer Kemal Kerincisz. The latter has been instrumental in the pursuit of a series of writers and intellectuals through the courts, filing cases against Pamuk himself as well as the novelists Elif Shafak and Perihan Magden and the murdered journalist Hrant Dink.
Evidence cited in the Turkish media links the gang with a number of incidents which had been
blamed on Islamist groups or separatist factions, and raises the prospect of
an investigation into long-standing suspicions of illegal activity within the
military and judiciary.
"These groups within the state have always existed," said a spokesperson for Istanbul's Free
Expression Initiative, Sanar Yurdatapan, "but they've never been charged
before. They were protected."
The charges brought against the suspects are not yet known. The investigation is being carried out under the terms of a law restricting media coverage.
"This could be a big development," continued Yurdatapan, suggesting that because figures very
high in the military establishment have been connected with such groups it
remains to be seen whether the cases will be brought to trial. "We are
afraid to have hope."