This is the Turkish antiques dealer who claims the is in possession of a bell from the RMS Titanic which famously sank after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic 107 years ago.
According to local media, Mehmet Ozbek, an antiques dealer from the north-western Turkish province of Eskisehir, claimed he has owned the bell for 10 years after it was originally stolen from the Titanic during its fateful maiden voyage.
The British passenger liner sank during the early hours of 15th April 1912 after hitting an iceberg at around 11.40pm the previous evening.
There were an estimated 2,224 passengers and crew on board, and between 1,490 and 1,635 people died that night.
Ozbek believes that the ship’s bell was stolen and is now in his hands, telling local media: “I am certain that the bell is authentic.”
He said that it was given to him by a friend 10 years ago.
Ozbek also admitted that he is obsessed with the 1997 James Cameron epic ‘Titanic’, and has never shown the bell to anyone until recently.
He explained: “I worked as a barman for many years and I became friends with a pilot who gave me the bell as a present. Since 2009, I have owned it.
“I haven’t shown it to any experts to check, but I am certain the bell is authentic.
“I researched it on the internet, and I am convinced anyway. I have also seen the movie many times.
“Around 5,000 items were removed from the sinking ship and I know that one bell is in Samsun [northern Turkish city] and this is the second one.
“I have never shown it to anyone, I chose to keep it a secret. I heard that the owner of the other bell bought it for 4,000 USD (3,074 GBP) eight or nine years ago.
“From the photos on the internet, it is obvious that this is the bell.”
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Story By: Sibel Abdiu, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder,Agency: Asia Wire Report