Novelist Orhan Pamuk gains suit at law

A Turkish court on Friday dropped a lawsuit against novelist Orhan Pamuk, rejecting a compensation demand by nationalists from the author for claiming that Turkey had killed more than 1 million Armenians and more than 30,000 Kurds.

Nationalist lawyer Kemal Kerincsiz and five other nationalists were seeking 6,000 Turkish Lira (US$4,500 or Ђ 3,700) each from Pamuk accusing him of "insulting, humiliating and making false accusations."

Pamuk was quoted as telling a Swiss newspaper that: "Thirty-thousand Kurds and 1 million Armenians were killed in these lands, and nobody but me dares to talk about it."

Kerincsiz had instigated an earlier high-profile court case against Pamuk for the same comments, but those charges were dropped earlier this year, under harsh criticism from the European Union, which Turkey hopes to join.

Armenians say that as many as 1.5 million of their ancestors were killing in an organized genocidal campaign by Ottoman Turks, and have pushed for recognition of the killings as genocide around the world, the AP reports.

Turkey vehemently denies that the killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks around the time of World War I was genocide. Turkey acknowledges that large numbers of Armenians died, but says the overall figure is inflated and that the deaths occurred in the civil unrest during the collapse of the Ottoman Empire.