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Australian-Turkish community commemorates the 42nd anniversary of the assassination of Turkish diplomat in Sydney

Forty-two years ago on Wednesday 17 December 1980 at 9.45 AM two Turkish diplomats were brutally murdered by unidentified assassin in a carefully planned and professional operation linked to an Armenian terrorist group in Sydney.  Mr. Sarik Ariyak (50) the Turkish Consul-General to Australia and Consul Attaché Mr. Engin Server (28) in front of the Turkish Consul house in Dover Height in front of their family members

Mr. Ariyak’s wife and seven-year-old daughter witnessed their dear father and husband dying before them. To-date, the assassins are unknown.

On 15 December, Turkish diplomatic mission in Sydney organized a commemoration in the memories of the martyred diplomats in front of where they were killed.  After the national anthem of Australia and Turkey, the Turkish Consul-General Mr. Ali Sevim welcomed the guests including diplomats, minster, parliamentarians, NSW Police officers, community leaders and media. He highlighted the tragedy which took place forty-two years ago and that this threat continues to be present to this day not only to Turkish diplomats worldwide but also towards Australians in general. He also thanked the Australian government and police force for their support to the diplomats and Turkish diaspora in Australia.

Former NSW Police Minister and Member for Baulkham Hills, Hon David Elliot who is current Minister for Transport in his speech said that the government has reopened the murder cases. The investigation is currently in the early stages of review.

Since 17 December 2019 the reward for information that leads to the conviction of those responsible for Mr Arıyak and Mr Sever’s murders was increased from $250,000 to $1 million.

Auburn Member of Parliament, Hon Lynda Voltz said in her speech and hoped that one day we will able to find the assassins. Police continue to appeal for information into the assassination of Turkish diplomats in Sydney more than four decades ago and release audio of a female claiming responsibility for 1980 assassination.

The Australian-Turkish Business Council Managing Director, Mr. Huseyin Baris Atayman emotionally expressed in his speech that, the terrorists who killed two innocent Turkish diplomats in front of their family now may be grandfathers and grandmothers; we might have met them in playgrounds, coffee shops, religious and social gatherings. However, they are not identified yet and he hoped that Australian authority soon will find them out and bring to the justice.  Mr. Atayman also gave details of Turkish diplomats who were killed around the world by the same terror outfits who wanted to revenge against Turkish community under their own narrative.

Mr. Bilal Aksoy, the Vice Consul and President of DiyanetFoundation of Australia concluded the speeches by reciting verse from Holy Quran and prayers.

Hon Shaoquett Moselmene, NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Mr. Mal Lanyon, Assistant Commissioner Mr. Mark Walton, Detective Superintendent Ms. Jodi Radmore were also present.  

Ms. Dilan Muslu, the visa officer of the Consulate was the master of ceremony thanked and requested the guests to participate for refreshment provided by the Consulate as the tradition of where the mourning of the deceased diplomats.

Written by Fousiya Bismi

Fousiya Bismi, based in Sydney is a family law advisor , student of comparative religions and a community activist. She recently Joined 5 News Australia as Co-Executive Producer.

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