Greek court rejects extradition of key DHKPC figure

ISTANBUL (CIHAN)- A Greek court has rejected an appeal to extradite to Turkey a key figure of the far-left terrorist Revolutionary People’s Liberation PartyFront (DHKPC) who was detained in February during a house raid in Athens.

According to the Hurriyet daily, the Thessaloniki Court of Appeals ruled not to extradite Turkish national Huseyin Fevzi Tekin, who, following the death of DHKPC leader Dursun KarataI, is now considered the leader of the terrorist organization, until Tekin’s application for political asylum in Greece is concluded. Upon an extradition request by the Ministry of Justice, Turkey’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs submitted a request to Greece for the suspects to be delivered to Turkey.

The court decided to continue with the DHKPC member’s detention because of heavy weapons and explosives found during the raid on the DHKPC terrorists’ apartment in Athens, carried out by a team from the counterterrorism unit of the Greek police. Among the weapons seized by the police in the raid were a Kalashnikov rifle, three magazines, three pistols, two automatic pistols, 350 grams of gelignite, two hand grenades and various explosives.

Greek police detained Tekin along with four members of the DHKPC, one of them a suspect in the murder of Özdemir SabancI, a leading businessman who was killed in 1996. Tekin, 49, for whom both Turkey and Greece had previously issued an Interpol Red Notice, was carrying a fake Bulgarian identity card. Tekin was also taken into custody as a suspect in 2011 following an explosion in which a member of the DHKPC was killed in the basement of a building in Thessaloniki, but was later released despite a request for Tekin to be extradited to Turkey. The raid also revealed that other leading members of the DHKPC were based in Greece.

The police discovered that Tekin’s fingerprints and DNA matched those previously discovered on a light anti-tank weapon (LAW), a DHKPC flag and a mobile phone seized last summer on a boat heading to Turkey across the Aegean Sea. The Greek Coast Guard captured the terrorist militants in an inflatable boat carrying arms and explosives to Turkey from the island of Chios in late July.

Meanwhile, Hasan KoIar, who was detained on charges of perpetrating the Triandria Street explosion in Thessaloniki in 2011, has reportedly been released by the Thessaloniki Criminal Court.

(CihanToday’s Zaman)