ISTANBUL (Combined Sources)–A local musician in the eastern province of Malatya applied to court Wednesday to get a name change, declaring that he was really an Armenian.
Kazim Akinci, who lives with his mother and makes a living selling his albums, said his family hid the fact that they were Armenian Christians, but had decided to stop hiding his true identity after Turkish journalist of Armenian decent Hrant Dink was murdered by Turkish Nationalists early last year.
He applied to a Malatya court to change his name to Sarkis Nerseyan and went to the local population registry to change the religion section of his passport card from Muslim to Christian.
In an interview with Turkish DHA news agency he said he his family hid his true identity for years out of feer.
He said his sadness over Dink’ murder had made him decide to declare his identity. "I make a living by selling my albums. I am well liked by those around me. They like me not because I am ‘Kazim’ or ‘Sarkis.’ I am liked because of my personality. There is no reason for fear or hiding."
Dink was shot and killed in front of the office of the weekly Armenian newspaper Agos in January 2007 by an ultra-nationalist teenager. Dink was also found guilty of insulting Turkishness by a court.
Malatya made the headlines in April last year when five ultra-nationalists raided the offices of a publishing house, murdering two Turkish Christian converts and a German national, all of whom were working as Christian missionaries.