May 16 2019

Elderly Greek man killed during robbery in Turkish island of Gökçeada

An 86-year old Greek man was found dead on Tuesday on a Turkish Aegean island, Turkey’s minority news site HyeTert reported.

The man, Zaferis Pinaris, was found dead with his hands and feet bound on the Turkish island of Gökçeada, also known by its Greek name, Imbros.

Turkish police detained one man and are searching for 3 others in relation to the murder, HyeTert said.

According to local news site Çanakkale Haber, Pinaris was beaten by the three attackers during a robbery.

Laki Vingas, the head of the Imbros Education and Culture Association, said on Twitter that the incident had awakened old wounds in the Greek community, which has suffered historic discrimination in Turkey.

“The Greek are rich, they have lots of gold, money! This mentality should change. Our first goal in life is not money, but to live happily and in peace,” Vingas said.

In an interview with the independent news site Bianet, Vingas said that despite enormous efforts, it was impossible to remove prejudices held by many Turkish citizens who see minorities as rich interlopers linked to foreign powers.

About 300 Greeks, mostly elderly, still remain on Imbros, which according to a 2016 census has a population of 8,776.