Former Grey Wolves Leader Killed in Ankara

Former Grey Wolves Leader Killed in Ankara

Sinan Ateş, a former leader of the Grey Wolves (Ülkü Ocakları), was fatally shot in Turkey’s capital city of Ankara on Friday, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

The Grey Wolves are seen as the paramilitary wing of the MHP, an ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), and their ideology is mainly based on Turkish ultra-nationalism. The Grey Wolves have targeted Kurds and Armenians, both in Turkey and elsewhere. The foreign minister of Turkey, Mehmet Cavusoglu has been caught making the Grey Wolves hand gesture multiple times, including to members of the Armenian community in Uruguay earlier this year.

Some of the so-called eco-activists currently causing a humanitarian crisis in Artsakh by blocking its only road to the outside world have also indicated affiliation or support of the Grey Wolves.

According to Anadolu, Ateş and his friend Selman Bozkurt were leaving an apartment in Kızılırmak when they were attacked by two men on motorcycles. Ateş was seriously injured by a bullet to the head, while Bozkurt was wounded in the shoulder. Ateş, who was given emergency treatment by first responders at the scene, was transported to a private hospital, where he was pronounced dead after arrival.

The police have launched an operation to catch the two assailants, Anadolu said.

In 2020 France officially banned the Grey Wolves after a center dedicated to the Armenian Genocide was defaced with graffiti, including the name of the Grey Wolves.

Earlier last year, the European Parliament called on the European Union and its member states to examine the possibility of adding the Grey Wolves to the EU terrorist list.

In its 2019-2020 report prepared by Turkey rapporteur Nacho Sanchez Amor, the EP voiced concerns about the group, saying it was expanding to worrying levels not only in Turkey but also in EU countries.