Turkey

Decades later, memories of assassinated Turkish diplomats still alive

Armenian terrorist organizations murdered 31 Turkish diplomats, their relatives in 1970s and 1980s

Mehmet Şah Yılmaz, Fuat Kabakcı   | 22.10.2021
Decades later, memories of assassinated Turkish diplomats still alive

ANKARA

Decades later, memories remain vivid of the Turkish diplomats who were assassinated by Armenian terrorist groups. 

The murderous campaign started in 1973 when Turkey's Consul General in Los Angeles Mehmet Baydar and diplomat Bahadir Demir were killed in an attack by a terrorist named Gourgen Yanikian.

The Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) was the first Armenian terrorist group to wage war against Turkey. It targeted not only Turkey but also other countries and became infamous for a 1975 bomb attack on the Beirut office of the World Council of Churches.

The attack was followed by a wave of assassinations of Turkish diplomats and their families around the world by Armenian terrorist groups ASALA, the Justice Commandos of the Armenian Genocide (JCAG) and the Armenian Revolutionary Army (ARA).

JCAG initially gained notoriety by claiming responsibility with ASALA for the Oct. 22, 1975 assassination of Danis Tunaligil, Turkey's ambassador to Austria, and the ARA is considered to be a continuation of JCAG under a different name.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency on the wave of terror against Turkish diplomats, Maxime Gauin, a senior researcher at the Ankara-based Center for Eurasian Studies, underlined that the campaign of assassinations by Armenian terrorist groups was aimed at supporting Armenian claims of territory from Turkey.

He noted that Austrian and French police did not share the intelligence they had on Armenian terrorist groups and the possibility of terrorist attacks with Turkey.

“If they did, these assassinations wouldn’t have taken place,” Gauin said.

*Writing by Ahmet Gencturk

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