12/02/2010, 00.00
TURKEY - VATICAN

Mgr Franceschini: The Turkish Church "can not intervene" against falsehoods on Mgr. Padovese

The Archbishop of Izmir confirms reports on attempts to pass off the murderer of the vicar of Anatolia as "mentally ill". The Latin Church is silenced over manipulation of the court and public opinion. Yet the Turkish minister of justice had promised "the truth".

Izmir (AsiaNews) – The Archbishop of Izmir, Ruggero Franceschini, confirms to AsiaNews that a group of “professors and lawyers” have ruled that Murat Altun, who assassinated Mgr. Luigi Padovese is insane. This conclusion is in direct opposition to a report by several doctors who - before the murder - had found Murat Altun to be perfectly sane. The bishop of Izmir, who after the death of Mgr. Padovese, succeeded him as vicar of Anatolia, sadly comments that "Unfortunately I can not speak in court. The Vatican can, through the nuncio, the Italian ambassador can, because Padovese was an Italian citizen, and family members of Padovese, they may intervene. The bishops of the Latin Church may intervene, but no one is obliged to listen to them.  The Latin Church is not ackowledged as a juridical subject".

On 3 June last, Mgr. Luigi Padovese, 63, was stabbed to death in the garden of his home in Iskenderun, on the southern coast of the country. The killing, which took place according to a kind of Islamic ritual, was carried out by Altun, who had worked for years as the bishop’s driver. The same Altun, before the murder, had sought to be declared insane, visiting several doctors, who instead had ruled out any instability. Altun had also confessed to "sexual" motivations for the murder, seen by many as an attempt to manipulate public opinion. Yesterday, the Hurriyet newspaper published the news that a group of experts have issued a report stating that Altun is not sane.

A few months ago, in an interview with AsiaNews (See AsiaNews.it, 10/06/2010 Archbishop of Smyrna: The martyrdom of bishop Padovese we want the truth and not "pious lies") Mgr. Franceschini claimed to have met the Turkish minister of justice to whom he said: "We want the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. We do not want other lies: that there were others involved , there was no one else involved, that it was a crime of passion. Nothing must be kept hidden”.

"[The minister] seemed quite sincere, and he promised me the truth," the Bishop says today. He adds: "I have not been questioned, no one has ever asked me anything. We don’t even have the possibility to shout or protest. We are even criticized by people who should not criticize us, people who instead should loves us".

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