In Turkey, four Palestinian guerrillas argued in a military court on Wednesday (26 September) over which of them shot dead two Turkish policemen in a raid on the Egyptian embassy in Ankara last July.
In Turkey, four Palestinian guerrillas argued in a military court on Wednesday (26 September) over which of them shot dead two Turkish policemen in a raid on the Egyptian embassy in Ankara last July. All four Palestinians have been charged with premeditated murder after two policemen were shot dead at the start of a two-day siege during which fourteen hostages, including the Egyptian Ambassador, were seized.
SYNOPSIS: Turkish troops and police provided tight security as the Palestinians were taken from a military prison on the outskirts of Ankara to the court on Wednesday (26 September). The four accused -- Mervan Sebanu, Mohammed Dip Ebuzerad. Hussein Suleiman Abdullah and Mustafa Beysheshi -- are all in their late teens or early twenties. The defendants claim to belong to a breakaway Palestinian group called "Eagles of the Palestine Revolution". They surrendered after holding Egyptian Embassy staff hostage for two days, following mediation by the Palestine Liberation Organisation (P.L.O.) which disassociated itself from the siege.
The Palestinians are facing a tribunal or military judges because Ankara is one of nineteen Turkish provinces under martial law as a result of political violence. At the trial's first formal hearing one of the Palestinians told the court: "Hang us; if not, we shall commit suicide. We came here to die. "The military prosecutor is demanding death for three of them, and life in prison for the other accused.
The Palestinians have denied an assertion that the attack was ordered by Abu Selim, a leader of the P.L.O.'s Syrian-backed Saiqa wing and one of the mediators during the siege.