ISTANBUL – A hundred and twenty people from twelve families have fled from Bilge, the Turkish village where on Monday night 44 people were murdered at a wedding ceremony. The families fear for their lives, as they have ties to the gunmen and they have been threatened with revenge.
Since the killings the families fleeing the village in the southeast of the country have been protected by the military police. But the police can’t protect them for long, so the families have no choice but to flee. Trucks are loaded with household effects, furniture and animals, but where the families can go remains unclear. Just as it is not known whether their flight will in fact save their lives.
The 44 victims have been buried. Their graves were dug in a hurry by several earth moving machines. The exact reason for the killings is still being investigated, but what is already clear is that a long term family feud was the basic motivation. One expert declared in a Turkish newspaper that it was not a clear case of honour killing, because in that case the murder would have been aimed at a specific person and not at random as was the case here.