Tevhid Nazmi Baştürk
The September 9th death death of Ahmet Atakan, a native of Armutlu, a town within the south eastern province of Hatay,has been an event that has caused much controversy within Turkey. The 22-year-old's death has been followed by allegations over his disputed cause of death, those opposing the government suggest that it was caused by a tear gas canister fired by riot police responding to a protest staged to support student groups in Ankara's Middle Eastern Technical University (ODTÜ) (the institution that caused last week's uproar in Turkey, you may refer to my earlier article here) opposing the construction of a road that would run through their campus, while police sources state that the cause of death was due to a fall from the roof of a building; claims which are supported by footage taken by Anadolu Agency.
This sorrowful occurrence has stirred nationwide debate amongst the polarized public. Anti-government groups, such as the DHKPC (the very same group responcible for the bombing of the American Embassy in Ankara last February), jumped on the social media bandwagon following the event claiming it to be a deliberate government attack on Turkey's Alevi community. Announcements from government officials that they will carry out a full investigation on the cause of Ahmet Atakan's death were taken to no avail by marginal groups calling for the mobilization of Alevi citizens against the police in Turkey.
While these calls for mobilization went mostly unanswered by Alevi comunities, these calls were responded to by some members of marginal leftist groups, who organized a march in Hatay as the evening hours progressed.