The Case of Assassination Team: Verdict on 22 April

The trial for the assassination attempt on KONGRA-GEL co-chair Remzi Kartal and KCK Executive Council member Zübeyir Aydar continued. The verdict will be made on 22 April.

The case of KONGRA-GEL co-chair Remzi Kartal and KCK Executive Council member Zübeyir Aydar's assassination attempt in 2017 was heard in Brussels.

As a result of the investigation into the assassination attempt, it was decided to file a lawsuit on 18 June 2021.

The case is heard at the Palace of Justice, Zekeriya Çelikbilek, Yakup Koç, Necati Demiroğulları, and Hacı Akkulak are on trial.

While the file compiled by Aydar and Kartal's lawyer Jan Fermon indicates a vast network of assassination and espionage across Europe, it also provides information on the role of several participants in the Paris Massacre, including Turkey's former ambassador to Paris, İsmail Hakkı Musa. The file contains important conclusions that individuals involved in the Brussels assassination attempt were coordinated by İsmail Hakkı Musa.

In June 2017, members of the assassination team were spotted spying around the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) building and were taken into custody by authorities. During the search, a Turkish police ID was discovered on Yakup Koç. Zekeriya Çelikbilek was also confirmed to have a military background. It is understood that Necati Demiroğulları, who lives in Belgium, are occupied with works such as logistics and recruiting more personnel to the team.

After being used as a spy, Hacı Akkulak, who is of Kurdish origin, learned that the incident has led to the assassination and gains importance as the person who confessed to Belgian authorities. Demiroğulları, a businessman, is said to have introduced Akkulak to the assassination team.

While Yakup Koç fled to Turkey, Zekeriya Çelikbilek remained in France. The plotters of the assassination are Çelikbilek and Yakup Koç, who introduce themselves as electricians.

Direct links between those involved in the assassination team and Ankara, as well as the Turkish Presidential Palace, have been established. The technical monitoring, phone calls, photos, and confessions obtained, particularly in France, demonstrate that a vast network of assassinations, ranging from the Paris Massacre to the Brussels assassination attempt, is operating throughout Europe under the command of Ankara.


Only Demiroğulları's lawyer attended the case hearing. Complainants Zübeyir Aydar and Remzi Kartal, as well as their attorneys Jan Fermon, were also present at the hearing.

Jan Fermon displayed the assassination team's links, communications between them, the chief of SADAT Adnan Tanrıverdi and Seyit Sertçelik, one of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's close advisers, whose photos taken both in Paris and at the Palace.


It was noteworthy that the prosecutor who arrived in the courtroom was not the same as the one who prepared the previous filing. While the previous prosecutor disputed all charges, claiming that no room for a lawsuit existed, the new prosecutor agreed that the criminal complaint was "real." However, the prosecutor stated that because the circumstances were not "clear enough," Akkulak may have influenced other team members to carry out the assassination.

Speaking to ANF, Jan Fermon said: "All of the data in the file refutes this notion. Yakup Koç reached out to Akkullak through Demiroğulları. All recorded interviews show that the plan was made by Çelikbilek and Koç. Within the legal context, the prosecutor's opinion is incomprehensible."

In response to the prosecutor's almost accusatory tone, Zübeyir Aydar said: "As Akkulak did not take it conscientiously, he reported the incident to the police."


Aydar said that the assassination team devised a plan to assassinate them and that the Turkish authorities targeted not only them but all dissident voices. Aydar said: "We feel that the ruling of this court is necessary so that such attempts and assassinations do not happen again," while citing examples of assassination attempts in other parts of Europe.


Remzi Kartal reportedly mentioned a conversation between Akkulak and Çelikbilek in which Çelikbilek encouraged Akkulak by saying, "We did it in Paris, look, nothing happened."

PKK founder Sakine Cansız, KNK Paris Representative Fidan Doğan, and Kurdish youth movement member Leyla Şaylemez were assassinated in Paris in 2013.


Fermon noted that, while various factors may play a role in the court's judgment, there may be a political impact on the case, particularly due to relations with Turkey.

While Demiroğulları's lawyer refuted the allegations, Jan Fermon stated that despite having a "secondary role," Demiroğulları knew what he was doing, assisted in logistics and recruiting, and should be charged with "being a member of a terrorist organization."

The court board has set April 22 as the deadline for its decision.