I came across the story of Ahmet Yildiz on Facebook from a guy that knew him and is spreading the word. Ahmet's story touched me deeply. He was the victim of an honor killing. His family killed him because he came out to them. Every time I hear a story like this, I just want to cry.
Ahmet Yildiz, 26, a physics student who represented his country at an international gay gathering in San Francisco last year, was shot leaving a cafe near the Bosphorus strait this week. Fatally wounded, the student tried to flee the attackers in his car, but lost control, crashed at the side of the road and died shortly afterwards in hospital. His friends believe Mr Yildiz was the victim of the country's first gay honor killing. Ahmet Yildiz's crime, his friends say, was to admit openly to his family that he was gay.I am Joe Villanova, I live in San Francisco California and Ahmet Yildiz is my family.
"From the day I met him, I never heard Ahmet have a friendly conversation with his parents," one close friend and near neighbour recounted. "They would argue constantly, mostly about where he was, who he was with, what he was doing."
The family pressure increased, the friend explained. "They wanted him to go back home, see a doctor who could cure him, and get married." Shortly after coming out this year, Mr Yildiz went to a prosecutor to complain that he was receiving death threats. The case was dropped. Five months later, he was dead.
His blank refusal to hide who he was in any way may have been too much for his family. "He could have hidden who he was, but he wanted to live honestly," the neighbour said. "When the death threats started, his boyfriend tried to persuade him to get out of Turkey. But he stayed. He was too brave. He was too open."
Was Ahmet Yildiz the victim of honour killing? 01 Feb 2009
Ahmet Yildiz (26 years old), was a young turkish, hairy bear. He was shot dead in front of his house on 15th July 2008. Nine months previously he gave a statement to the prosecuter in Üsküdar-Istanbul complaining that he was receiving death threats from his own family.
was this a victim of honour killing?
Ahmet’s murderer has not been caught yet. However the homicide detectives have stil not found the murderer.
Ibrahim explained Ahmet’s relationship with his family as: “The family started suspecting him when he was 20 years old..They tried monitoring his phone calls. His mom even hired a hacker to crack his computer password. Ahmet’s family lives in Adana. They first sent his sister to live at Ahmets. Then his mother came as well…”
Everything came to such a point that, one day Ahmet confessed and came out to his dad in a phone call. As Ibrahim says, the threats started after that conversation.
“He didn’t have any contact with his family the following eight months . However he always had hope they would accept him one day. He always used to say that he was the adored son of the family and sooner or later, one day they will accept him. He never thought that the threats would go beyond efforts to scare him. And if the prosecution office had taken his statement seriously, Ahmet would still be alive.”
He was not the only casualty on the night of his death. Mrs. Ummuhan Darama a neighbour who owns a cafe was also shot by a reverberated bullet. As the only eye witness of the case, Mrs. Ummuhan Darama detailed what happened that night as:
Then they asked her if she wants to take her case to court. “Certainly I want ! Even this question made me go mad. This case must be cleared up.”
Sixteen members of the german senate asked the german government to contact turkish government to bring closure to this case. Amnesty International also got involved into the case. British and german newspapers wrote about it. The blog on the internet “Ahmet is my family” received big support throughout the world. Ibrahim C.,who leads this campaign says we’ll do everything to get this murder solved. Whatever the reason for this murder be, we’ll fight till the very end.
“Why should we experience double-standards due to our sexual identity? We will do whatever it takes to raise the issue of killings committed becouse of sexual genetics.
My questions to older gay friends were mostly about their experiences about their coming out to their families and the reactions they received.
As I was just a child, I was caught by my family as having activities of discovering my sexual identity. My family always wanted to know more about me. Asking questions, putting pressure and exploring anything about me. Things came to such a point that I felt that I had to come out.
We didn’t call each other for a couple of days. So started our first phase in our relationship. They started trying to find a way out of this situation thinking that they had to change their son immediately.