Fuat Deniz researched within the field of the Assyrian genocide in the Ottoman empire and other researchers working in the field have been threatened, according to David Gaunt at Södertörn University College. Gaunt has worked with Fuat Deniz and they held several lectures and seminars together.
“On several occasions at our seminars people would attend claiming to be journalists only to then walk around photographing delegates,” Gaunt told Svenska Dagbladet.
It is reported that researchers have been harassed, received death threats and been labeled terrorists. Gaunt reports having been followed by security police on trips to Turkey and describes being subjected to a smear campaign by a Turkish newspaper.
“All those interested in Christian minorities in Turkey are considered a threat,” said Gaunt.
Deniz was internationally renowned for his work with the Assyrian genocide in the Ottoman empire and was scheduled to speak at a conference on religious minorities in the Netherlands today.
Fuat Deniz was stabbed to death in a university building in Örebro on Tuesday. His killer remains at large.