Celal Kildag took the witness stand in court today, refuting terrorist claims made against him by Turkish authorities.
Authorities in his native Turkey say he’s guilty of murder and arson stemming from an incident in 1988, he is fighting extradition on those charges.
Cayman 27’s Philipp Richter was in court and files this report.
Five months after being on island Celal Kildag finally got his day in court on Tuesday taking the stand in grand court to clear his name.
Mr. Kildag is accused of committing murder and arson on 3rd April 1988 in Turkey, a charge he denies.
He says he was in Germany at the time and his wife,Uta, who also testified said he was with her everyday as she was four months pregnant.
Mr. Kildag explained to the court that he fled to Germany in 1980 from turkey and was granted asylum.
Mr Kildag faced questions from Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryll Richards ,QC, about his involvement in a series of demonstrations in his and neighbouring villages and what he hoped to achieve by taking part in those protests.
” [the Kurdish] were living in fear, the military broke into their houses and put a lot of pressure on them, this is why [I] followed the demonstration” Said Mr. Kildag.
He said during the 1980’s the political situation in Turkey made life difficult for Kurdish people.
Mrs. Richards questioned him about being contacted by Turkish police in 1990 while he was residing in Germany and he explained.
“They assumed [I] was still around with the PPK, that is why they wanted confirmation that I was in Germany and my brother confirmed and the police knew then.”Said Mr. Kildag.
Defence attorney Laurence Aiolfi asked Mr Kildag if it wasn’t unusual for young Kurdish men to be falsely accused for crimes and be tortured in Turkey, which Mr Kildag said yes.
Magistrate Grace Donalds will rule tomorrow if the case will be dismissed or continue.
If it’s dismissed, Mr. Kildag will be a free man.