A younger brother of Mehmet Ali Agca, the Turk accused of shooting the pope, was quoted today as saying: "My brother hoped to win world fame and a place at the head of the Moslem world."
In an interview with the left-wing daily Cumhuriyet, Adam Agca (pronounced ADJ-ah) added, "Everyone is calling my brother a murderer, but if he is a murderer, he is not a common criminal. I hope they give me permission to travel to Italy. If they torture or spiritually oppress my brother, the whole Islamic world will flock to his side. The crusaders are against the entire Islamic world."
The reaction of the brother and others here, combined with official anger at alleged West European failure to heed Turkish warning about the fugitive Agca's recent movements, added to a general sense of the assassination attempt having exposed a rift between the Turkish turn of mind and that of the Western European allies in NATO.
An Ankara child psychiatrist offered a possible explanation of Agca's motive. He believed -- as Turkish Sunni Moslem fascists often believe -- that by slaying an infidel, he would win fame in the Moslem world and a place in paradise after death, said the psychiatrist. The same reasoning is alleged to have been used by Turkish fascists in massacres of Shiite Moslems in the Turkish internal turmoil of recent years.
The right-wing press, some of whose most noted columnists poured scorn on the pope's visit to Turkey in 1979, has been trying to prove that Agca was an Armenian or a Communist or both. Agca reportedly made such a declaration to Italian police, who are said to discount it. Armenians are anathema to conservative Turks, the two people having fought sporadically for five centuries.
Ugur Mumcu, columnist of leftist Cumhuriyet and a leading intellectual, wrote today that "the pope is one of the Christian statesmen I most admire. We are deeply saddened by anything like this happening to him. But try to understand the Turkish reaction. People here are ashamed and puzzled by this whole thing.
"Agca was definitely part of a well-organized right-wing movement. It may seem early to be talking about it, but really the first priority is for more effective international coordination to fight terrorism from the right and the left."
Turkish officials and newspapers charge Bonn with laxity toward fugitive Turkish terrorists. West Germany is Turkey's principal trading partner and its main donor of economic aid after the United States.
A West German Embassy official today described the press allegations as "rubbish from beginning to end." Turkish newspapers and officials say West Germany was repeatedly told that Agca, who was already on the run for murdering editor Abdi Ipekci, was hiding in Germany.
Gen. Kenan Evren, Turkey's military head of state, said: "If many of our European friends open their arms to terrorists escaping from our country and call them political refugees, this is the result."
The general also criticized European human rights groups who accuse Turkey of torture. "I hope the people who are asking whwether or not torture is going on in Turkey will now go to Italy and inquire whether or not it is happening to Agca," said the general. His words were described as "regrettable" by a West German diplomat here, who pointed out that Agca had escaped from a Turkish prison with the help of Turkish soldiers.
The West German said there had never been any definite proof that Agca was in West Germany, which is now home to thousands of Turkish expatriates. He pointed out that there would never have been any question of granting Agca political refugee status.
Turkey is insisting that Agca should be returned forthwith. He would face virtually certain hanging for the murder of Ipekci and two murders committed after his escape from jail.
An example of the press coverage here that has perplexed outsiders come in the mass-circulation Hurriyet today. Its front page carried an artist's impression of the moment of the assassination attempt with the captionk "The picture Italiam TV didn't show." It depicts an aggressive and muscular Turkish youth firing at a cringing pope while Italians look on aghast.
Special correspondent Metin Munir added from Ankara:
Thousands of wanted Turkish terrorists have fled to Europe since the military takeover last September to avoid arrest, and each of them could be another arrest, and each of them could be another Agca, according to a Turkish official.
Most of them are in West Germany, where 1.2 million Turks have found jobs. A West German diplomat here said 28,000 Turks have gone there since the coup.
About 25,000 people have been jailed since the generals cracked down to prevent imminent civil war. But hundreds more are wanted. One of the first things greeting travelers here are wanted posters, with those killed or caught crossed out by hand with felt pens.
France, West Germany and Scandinavia several months ago put visa restrictions on Turks entering their territory. Their aim was to curb the flood of Turkish unemployed as well as to keep terrorists out. But thousands arrived before the doors were shut.