İbrahim Bilgen

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İbrahim Bilgen
Personal details
Born (1949-03-02)2 March 1949
Batman, Turkey
Died 31 May 2010(2010-05-31) (aged 61)
On voyage from Istanbul, Turkey to Ashdod, Israel
Political party Felicity Party
Website http://www.trenbileti.com

İbrahim Bilgen (2 March 1949 – 31 May 2010) was a Turkish politician, electrical engineer and activist. He was born in Batman, Turkey and killed by the Israeli armed forces in the Gaza flotilla raid.

Early life and education[edit]

Bilgen was born in Batman, to a family that had migrated to Turkey from Mosul, Iraq. He graduated from Fırat University, where he studied electrical engineering, and was a member of the Chamber of Electrical Engineers of Turkey.[1] He had been a resident of Siirt, a south-eastern city of Turkey, since 1980. He was married and had six children.[2][3]

Political career[edit]

Bilgen was one of the founders of Virtue Party.[4] After the Virtue Party was banned by the Constitutional Court of Turkey in 2001, he joined the newly formed Felicity Party. He was a candidate for Member of Turkish Parliament in 2007 for that party for Siirt Province, but he was not elected, the Felicity Party receiving 884 votes (0.96%) there.[5][6] In Turkish local elections, 2009, he was a candidate for mayor of Siirt, but he was again not elected.[7][8] In a press interview during his 2009 campaign, he said: "I was born a Felicity man, I will die a Felicity man. Because Felicity is the only national party of Turkey. This party has neither come under the yoke of America, nor of any other country."[9] Since then, he had been serving as a provincial inspector for the Felicity Party.[10]

Business career[edit]

After working as an electrical engineer in various companies, İbrahim Bilgen founded an electrical engineering company called Bilgen Mühendislik, in 2004.[11] In addition, he founded the first local television channel in Siirt, Selam TV.[12]


As a volunteer for IHH in Siirt,[13] Bilgen joined the Gaza flotilla of May 2010 on board the MV Mavi Marmara, which set sail from Istanbul for the Gaza strip on May 23, 2010. He died on May 31, 2010, during the Gaza flotilla raid.

According to an autopsy Bilgen died from four gunshot wounds to temple, chest, hip and back.[14]

Reactions to his death[edit]

  • Afif Demirkıran, Member of Parliament for the AK Party from Siirt, said: "May Allah accept the martyrdom of İbrahim Bilgen."[15]
  • A press statement by the Chamber of Electrical Engineers of Turkey stated: "We condemn the attack of Israel in which one of our members was killed."[16]
  • Photographs of İbrahim Bilgen were hung in the streets in Siirt.[17]
  • Numan Kurtulmuş, Felicity Party leader, held his photo during a press conference and called him a "martyr".[18]
  • American author and journalist Ali Abunimah has reported a claim by Sheikh Raed Salah, a leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel who was also on board the Mavi Marmara, that Bilgen may have been deliberately targeted for execution by Israeli forces who mistook him for Raed Salah, and lists some pieces of circumstantial evidence that support this claim.[19]


  1. ^ "Zaman" (in Turkish). Zaman. Archived from the original on 29 February 2012. Retrieved 26 July 2010. 
  2. ^ "Siirtli İbrahim Bilgen İsrail saldırında öldü". Internet Haber. Retrieved 26 July 2010. 
  3. ^ "3 of dead wanted to be'martyrs'". National Post. 2 June 2010. [dead link]
  4. ^ "Siirt Manşet - Siirt Haber - Siirt Haberleri - Son Dakika Siirt Haberleri - Siirt Haberler - Siirt Kurtalan Haberler - Siirt Haber - Siirt Son Dakika Haberleri - Siirt Son Dakika - Siirt Manşet Haber". Siirtmanset.com. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  5. ^ [1][dead link]
  6. ^ "Seçim Sonuçları 2007 SİİRT | Oy Oranları | Genel Seçim Sonuçları SİİRT". Secimsonuclariturkiye.com. Archived from the original on 2 September 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  7. ^ "Siirtli İbrahim Bilgen İsrail saldırısında öldü". Internethaber. 1 June 2010. Retrieved 1 June 2010. 
  8. ^ "8 Turkish, One US Martyrs Arrive in Turkey, Together with the 466 Injured and Released After the Israeli Terrorist Attack on the Freedom Flotilla". Aljazeerah.info. 2010-06-03. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  9. ^ "Terörist İsrail 360 kişiyi rehin aldı" (in Turkish). Milli Gazete. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  10. ^ "Siirtli İbrahim Bilgen İsrail saldırında öldü". Internethaber. 1 June 2010. Retrieved 1 June 2010. 
  11. ^ "Şehit İbrahim Bilgen – Gazze Mavi Marmara". Bilgenmuhendislik.com. 2010-06-18. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  12. ^ "Şehit İbrahim Bilgen İçin, Taziye Evi Kuruldu « Siirt Haber & Anket". Siirtanket.net. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  13. ^ "İsrail saldırısında ölen 4 Türkten biri Siirtli Saadet Partili İbrahim Bilgen | Politika | EurActiv.com.tr – Türkiye'nin online AB Gazetesi". Euractiv.com.tr. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  14. ^ Robert Booth (4 June 2010). "Gaza flotilla activists were shot in head at close range". The Guardian. 
  15. ^ Siirt Haberleri. "Siirt Son Dakika Haberleri". siirtliler.net. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  16. ^ "İsrail'İn Saldirisini Lanetle Kiniyoruz!" (in Turkish). EMO. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  17. ^ "Gaza Aid Flotilla Activists Arrive in Turkey". Turkish Weekly. 3 June 2010. Archived from the original on 2 July 2010. Retrieved 2013-02-10. 
  18. ^ "Vahşete ve barbarlığa karşı: Kararlı millet, cesur devlet | Saadet Partisi | Prof. Dr. Numan Kurtulmuş". Saadet.org.tr. Retrieved 2010-07-26. [dead link]
  19. ^ "Did Israel try to assassinate Sheikh Raed Salah on Mavi Marmara but kill a Turkish engineer instead? #flotilla - Ali Abunimah". aliabunimah.posthaven.com. 2010-06-04. Retrieved 2014-07-26. 

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