Monday, August 04, 2008

THE STATE OF THE PRESS IN TURKEY

"Without an unfettered press, without liberty of speech, all of the outward forms and structures of free institutions are a sham, a pretense -- the sheerest mockery. If the press is not free; if speech is not independent and untrammeled; if the mind is shackled or made impotent through fear, it makes no difference under what form of government you live, you are a subject and not a citizen."
~ William E. Borah.


For all of those worthless pacifists out there who condemn legitimate armed self-defense (only when the ones engaging in legitimate armed self-defense are Kurds, naturally) and constantly whine that the only way for Kurds in Turkish-occupied Kurdistan to have full equality in Turkey is through the widespread use of media to broadcast the Kurdish cause, or for those who condemn legitimate armed self-defense and take up the worthless pacifist argument because they are terrified of the label "terrorist", here's something for you to think about, from Info-Turk:


The deadlock which derived from Kurdish problem has brought many human rights violations in recent times. While the Turkish Military and the Government preparing for military action towards the Northern Iraq, on the other hand they have increased the pressure on any civilians and organisations which believe the question should be solved peacefully and through dialogue rather than violent or military actions. Its almost came to an attention that anyone declaring against the Government and Turkish Military Forces has became target or criminalised.

The censorship upon opposition media groups should also be handled within this context. Censorship has taken practice without overlapping with any practices of law. Newspapers and their publications are closing down one after another, people left out of freedom of receiving news.

Freedom of press and freedom of expression are main priorities of democracy. The practices and violent against press and broadcasting organisations highlights heavy wound that democracy has received.

Between the dates of 4th August 2006 and 25th May 2008, 14 newspaper has been stopped 33 times. The peak times were March 2007, October 2007 and November 2007. In March 2007 4 newspapers was closed, 3 newspapers in October 2007, 4 newspapers in November 2007. In addition the Alternatif newspaper which started its publication in 19th May 2005 has stopped for 1 month on 25th May 2005 and the Gelecek newspaper which started publication 28 May has stopped for 1 month in 30th June. This situation shows clearly the current state of censorship and anti-democratic practices level.

Balance sheet in this subject as follows:

GUNDEM NEWSPAPER HAS BEEN CLOSED 6 TIMES

• The Gundem newspaper which started publishing in 17 January 2007 has been closed 6 times:

• The 13. High Criminal Court ruled out on 6 March 2007 with two different sentences on same day stopped for 30 days. The reason was “propaganda of the organisation”.

• Gundem newspaper which stopped for 1 month has stopped for another 15 days after 2 days of press by 11. High Criminal Court. The court has ordered all the articles, adverts and columns of the 7th and 8th April about the Kurdish question for the reason of stopping.

• Gundem newspaper was closed for 3rd time in 12 July 2007 for 15 days. The reason was again “propaganda of the organisation”. It is significant that these practices taken place immediately before 22 July 2007 elections.

• On 8 September 2007 Gundem newspaper was closed 4th time. The articles of “lets become nation and win” and “self-critism in practice not in words” was the reason for closing for another 30 days.

• The Gundem Newspaper which was closed on 8 September 2007 for 4th time was again closed on for another 30 days on grounds of “propaganda of the organisation” one day after started publishing on 9 October 2007.

• On 14 November 2007 Gundem newspaper was closed for 6th time. Istanbul 9th High Criminal Court has ordered the closure of the Gundem newspaper for 30 days on grounds of “propaganda of the organisation”.

• Gundem newspaper which was closed for 6 times in one year has also been blocked from internet. The www.ozgurgundem.net website was blocked by court order on 23 October 2007, which had daily view over a 60 thousand people.

GUNCEL NEWSPAPER WAS CLOSED 3 TIMES

• Guncel newspaper which started publication on 19th March 2007 has closed for 3 times:

• The Guncel newspaper which started publishing on 19 March 2007 was closed on 30 March 2007 just after 12 days. The reason for closure was “propaganda of the organisation”.

• Guncel newspaper was closed for second time on 17 July 2007 for 12 days. The reason for closure was “it was a follow-up of Gundem newspaper”. Similar to Gundem, Guncel was closed just before 22 July elections.

• The Guncel newspaper was started publishing on 17 October after closing twice. The newspaper was closed on same day by Istanbul 10. High Criminal Court which viewed as justice scandal. The justification grounds of “all news headings was a propaganda of the organisation and it was follow-up of other newspapers” which was not concrete and complete inexplicable.

JET CENSORSHIP TO YASAMDA GUNDEM NEWSPAPER

• Istanbul Public Prosecutor Zekeriya Ay has ordered withdrawal circulation of Yasamda Gundem newspaper on 9 March 2007 the day of starting publishing in Istanbul Police Headquarters Security Branch. The Prosecutor Ay has also ordered a seizure of unpublished editions of newspaper making another justice scandal. Prosecutor claimed the Yasamda Gundem newspaper was follow-up of Gundem newspaper which was closed for 1 month on 6 March 2007.

GERCEK DEMOKRASI NEWSPAPER CLOSED

• Gercek Demokrasi newspaper was also closed when other closures took place one after another in October 20007. Istanbul 10. High Criminal Court has ordered to close paper on grounds of “propaganda of organisation” on 17th October 2007.

• When Gercek Demokrasi newspaper started publishing again on 17 November it was closed for one month in same grounds on 21st November 2007.

RECORD NUMBER OF CASES AND CLOSURE ORDERS TO ULKEDE OZGUR GUNDEM NEWSPAPER

• In between the dates of 1 March 2004 – 16 November 2006 there was a record number of 600 cases opened against Ulkede Ozgur Gundem Newspaper owner, editor publishers, certain writers and reporters on different grounds. The seizure order was given 17 times and 106 cases resulted with conviction was given penalty of 464 thousands 694 YTL and editor publisher Hasan Bayar was given prison sentence for 15 year 11 months and 10 days. On 4 August and 16 November newspaper was closed for 15 days each time. It is also important to realize that second closure order was given after 6 days of Chief of General Staff statement of “publication should not be allowed”.

AZADIYA WELAT NEWSPAPER CLOSED

• The first daily Kurdish newspaper in Turkey Azadiya Welat which started publishing on 15 August 2006 was closed for 20 days by Diyarbakir 5. High Criminal Court on 23rd March 2007 on grounds of “propagating of the organisation”

• Azadiya Welat newspaper licensee Vedat Kursun was arrested for articles published on different dates on grounds of “propagating of the organisation” and “setting activity in behalf of organisation”.

WEEKLY PUBLISHED YEDINCI GUN NEWSPAPER

• Yedincigun newspaper which started publishing on 5 November was closed after its second edition on 12 November by Istanbul 13. High Criminal Court on grounds of “propagating for the organisation”

• On 27 November after starting its publishing the Yedincigun newspaper was closed within same day for another 1 month on same grounds by Istanbul 10. High Criminal Court.

• When its started printing on 12 January 2008 was closed again on same day by Istanbul 12. High Criminal Court for another 1 month.
• On 3 March 2008 was closed again for another 1 month, on same day of publishing by Istanbul Sentinel 9. High Criminal Court.

• The articles on pages 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 13 and 14 of Yedincigun newspaper’s 7-13 April 2008 edition was justified for reason of closing for 1 month on 7 April 2008 by Istanbul 9. High Criminal Court.

• The articles on pages 1, 2, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14 and 15 of Yedincigun newspaper’s 12- 18 May 2008 edition was justified as reason for closing for 1 month on 13 May 2008 by Istanbul 9. High Criminal Court.

WEEKLY PUBLISHING OF HAFTAYA BAKIS NEWSPAPER

• Haftaya Bakis newspaper which started publishing on 1st December 2007 has closed for one month after its second edition (8-14 December) on 8 December by Istanbul 11. High Criminal Court on grounds of “propagating for the organisation”.

• On 19th January 2008 Haftaya Bakis newspaper has closed for one month on 2nd February 2008 by Istanbul 12. High Criminal Court.

• The news headings of “I am calling to Erdogan” and “the Newroz of Gaining Freedom” in Haftaya Bakis newspaper’s 17-23 March 2008 edition was closed for 1 month on 18 March 2008 by Istanbul 11. High Criminal Court in accordance with code 3713 6/last article.

WEEKLY PUBLISHING YASAMDA DEMOKRASI NEWSPAPER

• Yasamda Demokrasi newspaper which started publishing on 15th December 2007 has closed for one month in its first edition (15-21 December) on 15 December by Istanbul 9. High Criminal Court on grounds of “propagating for the organisation”.

• On article headings of “Conspiracy critized heavily”, “Ocalan: America plays bad”, Selahattin Erdem’s article “Edi Bes e” (Enough is Enough), “Mustafa Karasu’s “We are criticising conspiracy” and “up until gaining success with Edi Bes e” articles were found as “propagating for the organisation” and therefore newspaper was closed for 1 month by 17-24 February 2008 edition by Istanbul 9. High Criminal Court on 17 February in accordance with 3713 code and 6/last article.

• The 24-30 March 2008 edition of Yasamda Gundem newspaper’s article “First Newroz fire was on page lit up in Serhat” on page 8 has become the ground for closure on 4 April 2008 for one month by Istanbul 13. High Criminal Court.

WEEKLY PUBLISHED TOPLUMSAL DEMOKRASI NEWSPAPER

• Toplumsal Demokrasi weekly newspaper which started publishing on 22nd December 2007 has closed for one month in its third edition (5-11 January 2008) on 5 January 2008 by Istanbul 11. High Criminal Court on grounds of “propagating for the organisation”.

• On 25 February 2008 after starting its publishing the Toplumsal Demokrasi newspaper was closed within same day for another 1 month on same grounds by Istanbul 11. High Criminal Court.

WEEKLY PUBLISHED OTEKI BAKIS NEWSPAPER

• The 31st March – 6th April 2008 edition of Oteki Bakis newspaper’s article “Clear Message From Newroz lands” on page 7 has become the ground for closure on 4 April 2008 for one month by Istanbul 13. High Criminal Court.

WEEKLY PUBLISHED YENI BAKIS NEWSPAPER

• Yeni Bakis weekly newspaper which started publishing on 14th April 2008 has closed for one month (5-11 May 2008 edition) on 8 May 2008 by Istanbul 13. High Criminal Court for article of “Buyukanit and Basbug has become unsuccessful” on pages 10 and 11.

ALTERNATIF NEWSPAPER

• Yeni Bakis newspaper which started publishing on 19th May 2008 has closed for one month on 25 May 2008 for various article headings and columns which was “propagating the organisation” in 24-25 May 2008 publications by Istanbul 10. High Criminal Court.

GELECEK NEWSPAPER

• Gelecek newspaper which started publishing on 28th May 2008 has closed for one month for various article headings and contents which was propagating the PKK-Kongra Gel on 30 June 2008 publication by Istanbul 11. High Criminal Court.

THE AUTHORITIES POINT OUT TARGET

• While from August 2006 till October 2007 7 newspaper was closing the newspaper for 15 times and in same time state authorities were openly targeting and threatening via illegal powers.

• The Chief General Staff Yasar Buyukanit was openly targeting Gundem Newspaper on 12 April 2007 by calling its name out directly. Buyukanit whom was openly targeting Gundem Newspaper by saying “ As you are all aware PKK has a newspaper, Gundem. Will it be acceptable for its reporter to join us here? They are supporters of PKK”.

• July 2005: General Staff Seconf Chief Ilker Basbug was targeting Ulkede Ozgur Gundem newspaper in its 3 hour briefing. In the meeting Basbug has announced newspaper as “supportive of separatist terror organisation” and “its circulation should be obstructed”.

• 11 June 2006: Justice Minister of a time Cemil Cicek has made Ulkede Ozgur Gundem a open target in Newspaper Association General Meeting. Cicek has pointed out “This newspaper should be stopped”.

• 10 November 2006: Chief General Staff Yasar Buyukanit was answering reporters questions in “Media Cocktail” given by General Staff Secretary Majorgeneral Zeki Colak in Gazi Army House. Buyukanit has remarked “ PKK’s magazines and daily newspapers are published. These should not be allowed.” (Kurdish Info, August 3, 2008)

Pressures on the DIHA News Agency

The Dicle News Agency DIHA was dstablished on the 4th April 2002 with the headquarters situated in Istanbul, and subsequent offices located in Van, Diyarbakır, Cizre, Tunceli and Hewlêr. DIHA has correspondents on duty and positioned in Adana, Ankara, İzmir, Mersin, Batman, Siirt, Muş, Kars, Gaziantep, Şanlıurfa, Kocaeli, Çanakkale, Malatya, Hakkari, Yüksekova, Şırnak, Elazığ and Bingöl.

Along with the executive director Mustafa PEKTAŞ, the editor Devrim Göktaş and two legal advisors Özcan KILIÇ and Servet Özen, there are 80 staff members that also work for the agency.

DIHA offers an internet based news service on www.diclehaber.com in Turkish, Kurdish and English. Having been set up under the principles of bestowing fast, reliable and objective journalism, the agency provides a news service in written, visual and audio form, on account of the fact that it has established a vast news network in the Middle East.

Possessing a universal value for human rights and freedom, irrespective of any race, religion, creed, language or sexuality, and with respect to the diversity of communities, we are committed to the belief in people’s right to be informed of the truth. The staff of young editors, reporters, photographers, cameramen and administrators, who reject any form of censorship, make no concessions with the ethics of the press, are completely funded by the subscribers.

PRESSURES ON THE AGENCY

Since the beginning, the agency has faced a number of obstructions whilst attempting to carry out duties. Many numbers of staff have been taken into custody, prevented from reporting news, been manhandled, news reports have been seized; cameras and recording equipment have also been destroyed. There are 9 colleagues currently being held in prison, and 8 trials in relation with meetings with news sources, news materials and subjects, that are ongoing.

The pressures and obstacles we have faced since beginning broadcasting and publication are as follows: the agency headquarters in Sisli, Istanbul was raided in September 2004 under the guise of the NATO summit. The 16 policemen that carried out the raid, used there own equipment to record the raid and the agency, and also seized the identification cards of the staff members. We were prevented from providing a news service to our subscribers. The agency’s technical department’s central server and hard drive was seized along with the hard discs of 9 separate computers. The journalists that got news of the raid and tried to get in were prevented from doing so. As a result of the raid the following staff members were taken into custody: Beyhan Sekman, Müjde Arslan, Mazlum Özdemir, Evin Katurman, Özlem Kasa, Berivan Tapan, Cevdet Deniz, Medine Yiğit, Mehmet Ali Çelebi, Emine Çelebi, Mehmet Sami Aksoy, Davut Özalp, Kenan Kırıkkaya, Aysel Bakıray, Meryem Yılmaz and Timur Ubeydullah.

• On his way to the Yedisu district of Bingol to investigate reports that the Gendarme Commander in Chief, A.Y., had planted Jute with some villagers, our Diyarbakir correspondent, Birol Duru, was taken into custody on the 10th August 2005 in the Karliova district’s Dinarbey village, and arrested on the 12th August by the soldiers under the chief’s command, under the guise that he was “carrying a cassette that praised HPG militants”. Following his release on the 29th December 2005, Duru, under article 314/3 and 220/7 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), stating that it is a crime to, “to be aware of an organisation’s capacity and circumstance, hence knowingly and willingly aid and harbour”, was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months in prison on the 28th September 2006. The case is now in Supreme Court.

• In February 2006, in the Akdeniz town of Mersin, our correspondents, Nesrin Yazar and Evrim Dengiz, whilst following up on a news report, were taken into custody at gunpoint. After being arrested under article 125 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), Yazar and Dengiz were charged for alleged possession of Molotov cocktail in their cars. Our correspondents were held in Mersin and Adana for 9 months. The trial is ongoing.

• After reporting on the forest fires in Tunceli and Bingol, and the speech made by the head of the Bingol office of Turkeys largest human rights organisation (The IHD). Ridvan Kizgin, our correspondents, Serdar Altan and Birol Duru were charged under article 159/1 of the Turkish Penal Code. Ridvan Kizgin, who made the statement, and Sami Tan, the DIHA editor, were also charged under article 283/1 of the Turkish Penal Code. The trials are continuing in the Bingol Supreme Court.

• Our Correspondent, Hikmet Erden, has been put on trial following his report on the 22nd July general elections and the Gendarme commanders’ alleged pressure on the villagers of the Karacadag district of Diyarbakir not to vote for the DTP’s ‘a thousand hopes’ candidates. The prosecution are asking for 1 to four years imprisonment for the crime of ‘broadcasting fabricated news’.

• Our correspondent, Mehmet Cevizci, was taken into custody due to an order of arrest by default judgement, whilst on his way to a journalism workshop. The workshop was set up by the Independent Communications Network (BIA Net) and Press Now, to be held at the Mavi Gol hotel in the sivrice district of Elazig. Cevizci was taken to the gendarme police station where he was held for 1 day before being released.

• Our Gaziantep correspondent, Bahattin Toren, was attacked on his way to the agency office by an as yet unidentified group. The attack was unprovoked and came about when the group passed by the bus stop Toren was waiting at and said, “Don’t make me cut you so early in the morning”, and then proceeded to attack him and cut him on the face. Police where called to the incident, but did not turn up, at which point, the surrounding people aided Toren to a nearby Polyclinic.

• On the 7th July Belguzar Oruc joined the ROJ TV news bulletin broadcast of the day, and reported on the developments in Mardin leading up to the July 22nd elections, in Kurdish. Following her contribution to the broadcast, a case was opened against her in the Diyarbakir criminal court, under the pretext that she was creating “propaganda for support of the militant organisation”. A sentence of up to 5 years has been requested under article 7/2 of the Contestation against Terror Act.

• Our Correspondent Mehmet Ali Ertas was prevented by police from attending a meeting organized by the Prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Sanliurfa, under the justification that it was a ‘private decision’. Not only was Ertas prevented from observing the meeting, but also from being in the vicinity of where the meeting was being held.

• Within the two years as our Siirt correspondent, Musa Aksara, has been; taken into custody 15 times, his house raided once, and beaten, assaulted and threatened in the street many times. Aksara has submitted complaints to the IHD approximately 10 times, and brought prosecution claims against the police and JITEM approximately 5 times.

• Our Correspondent Rustu Demirkaya was taken into custody and held for one day before being released, after observing a press release held by the Democratic Peoples Platform to protest the killing of 2 TIKKO members in the rural regions of Tunceli.
Demirkaya was arrested in June 2006 following the surrender and confession on Engin Korumcu in the rural regions of Geyiksuyu. He was held in an E-type prison in Malatya for almost 7 months before being discharged. He is currently on trial in the Malatya Criminal Court and awaiting a sentencing of 5-10 years in prison, for the alleged crime of ‘aiding and harbouring militants’.

Additionally, our correspondents, Rustu Demirkaya and Kadir Ozbek were taken into custody after following the committee that took Er Coskun Kirandi after his capture by the HPG in 2005. Demirkaya and Ozbek were released after 2 days, but were prosecuted for ‘militant propaganda’. The trial was acquitted.

The other case brought against Demirkaya was following his news report on an alleged defrauding of a bus company by the Tunceli Gendarme Regiment Colonel Namik Dursun. Demirkaya was held in custody for one day and fined 1,500YTL for ‘insulting through the presses. The decision has been adjourned due to an appeal.

Another case was opened against Demirkaya under the pretext that he had ‘insulted the authority of the military’, following his report of the seizing of the Tunceli Sutluce villgers’ housing by the military in 2005. Demirkaya was taken into custody following his contribution to a ROJ TV broadcast via telephone in 2007. He was released after one day, and a case opened up against him for the crimes of ‘militant propaganda’ and ‘activity in the name of militant groups’.

In February 2008, Demirkaya was threatened by police because he was taking pictures of the views of the city centre. He has previously received numerous threats whilst trying to carry out his duties as a journalist.

Demirkaya became the victim of an attack by the Il Gendarme Commander Chief of Staff, Colonel Namik Dursun, after an incident broke out following the raiding of the Tunceli Fundamental Rights and Freedoms Association in 2006. Nothing has been investigated or officially processed in regards to the matter despite the crime reports that has been issued. Demirkaya has been prevented from news investigations by Namik Dursun many times within that year, and other police officers and journalists have been threatened for merely talking to him.

• Police prevented the Izmir Kadifekale region’s Newroz celebrations. Our correspondent, Ayse Oyman, was assaulted during this prevention. She was also prevented from recording the incident.

• The Varto region’s gendarme commander, leitenant G.G and seargeant, A.S., visited the offices of the owner of GimGim newspaper and our correspondent Murat Aydin. They were told to “watch out at night” as a threat by the commanders.

• Our correspondent, Metin Inan was assaulted by police after watching news reports on a group who were protesting the health condition of the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, in Gulbahce the Seyhan region of Adana.

• A case has been filed against reporter, Rojda Kizgin, under article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), following the publication of the headline; “the protectors are fishing with government bombs”.
• Another case was filed against Rojda Kizgin following her report about the rape victim, N.S, in Bingol.

• Our Izmir correspondent, Mustafa Aydin, was taken into custody on the 21st March 2008 after investigating a news report. He was released after 2 daysfollowing a decision by the Izmir Criminal Court.

• Ozlem Akin and Metin Inan were taken into custody following their observation of a number of mayors visiting a demonstation tent, set up to protest the arrest of the Adana Yakapinar region Mayor, Osman Keser.

• Our correspondents were removed from the vicinity of an AK party election meeting held in Diyarnakir.

• Our Batman and Siirt correspondents were not allowed to join the official governorship programs that included the prime minister or anyone of ministerial positions.

• Our Izmir correspondent, Ayse Oyman, was teken into custody in February 2007, following a news investigation. A case has been filed against her, which is still pending.

• An investigation has begun on our correspondent, Erdogan Altan, following his news reports.

• The Van Republic Attorney has begun an investigation on our Van correspondents, Oktay Candemir and Ercan Oksuz, following a report they published in the Azadiya Welat newspaper on the 22nd September 2007 titled; “the Zilan genocide lives on”.

• In 2005, our correspondent, Vedat Kursun, was taken into custody and arrested after watching the human shield created in the Kato mountain in Hakkari, in order to stop the TSK covert operations against the HPG.

• After attending the funeral of the HPG member Mehmet Haymen, who died in the 3rd February clash that took place in the rural regions of Bingol, our correspondents; Veli Ay, Rüştü Demirkaya, Volkan Bora and Kerem Çelik were returning to the office when they were taken into custody on the 18th February. They were later released.

• Our correspondents, Asmin Deniz and Ubeydullah Hakan were taken into custody following “a complaint having been made” about them, upon their return from a news investigation in Bingol on the 28th November 2007. Copies of their recordings along with their statements, were taken, upon which they were released.

OUR IMPRISONED CORRESPONDENTS

Following the 19th of April 2007 raid on the Mersin office of the Gundem newspaper, our corrspondents, Ali Bulus and Mehmet Karaaslan were taken into custody and arrested. They were not brought before a judge for 8 months. They were held in an E-type prison after being accused of being ‘members of a militant group’, and ‘producing militant propaganda’. The prosecutor in the trial requested a sentence of ten years for each of them, and were charged for being members of a militant group.

Our correspondent, Faysal Tunc, was taken into custody following an ID control at a checkpoint on his way to Sirnak from the Eruh region of Siirt. Whereas our correspondent, Behdin Tunc, was taken into custody on his way to Sirnak following and ID control in Idil, after returning from amarch that had taken place in the village of Omerli (Amara). Our correspondents are currently being held in Diyarbakir, and are on trial at the Diyarbakir criminal court for ‘knowingly and willingly aiding an illegal organization’.

They could face up to ten years in prison.

• A warrant of arrest was issued against our correspondent, Murat Kolca, by default for not giving a statement for a case against him in the Izmir criminal court. Kolca was arrested in Sanliurfa by the Asliye Criminal Court on thw 20th January 2008, and is sill in prison in Izmir.

• *Our Malatya correspondent, Ersin Celik, was taken into custody and later arrested, after statements made by a confessor, in Diyarbakir on the 2nd April 2008. Celik is still in Malatya E-type prison.

• Our Corrsepondent, Mehmet Ali Ertas was taken into custody after watching the demonstrations against the Newroz incidents in Van, Hakkari and Yuksekova. Ertas was arrested in Mersin Criminal Court following the charges of ‘falsifying evidence’and danger of escape, being brought against him.

• Our Van correspondent, Siddik Guler was taken into custody on the 4th April 2008 because of an investigation against her, following her presence in Hakkari for a news investigation. An arrest decision was made under articles 250, 94 and 98 in the Hakkari Republic attorney generalship.

• Our Sirnak correspondent, Haydar Haykir, was taken into custody on the 8th January 2008 in the Cizre region of Sirnak. On the 12th January, he was arrested and sent to the Batman H-type prison.

EQUIPMENT THAT WAS SEIZED AND NOT RETURNED

MERSİN 4 computers, 2 cameras, 2 video cameras
DİYARBAKIR 1 video camera, 1 camera
ŞIRNAK 1 computer hard rive, camera and video camera
BATMAN 1 video camera
MALATYA 1 laptop, 1 camera
VAN 1 video camera,1 camera
(Kurdish Info-DIHA, August 3, 2008)


If the truth about Turkey is not permitted to be published within Turkey, how likely is the truth about Turkey going to be published without? When has any Western news agency reported on the total restriction of the press in Turkey, or on the total blackout of news from Turkish-occupied Kurdistan? How is any so-called "democratic" process or pacifist means going to work to end the repression?

Do we need to go into Turkey's history of "disappearing", shooting, or beating to death those journalists who write the truth, or the bombing by the Ankara regime of those newspaper offices that publish the truth?

Of course, if all of this had happened to Palestinians . . .

4 comments:

Gordon Taylor said...

Another slam dunk. The Borah quotation is perfect.

The Bush-era slogan, "If you aren't outraged, you aren't paying attention," should have been invented for Turkey.

Kawe said...

Indeed it is a slam dunk. I read and published the same report on my blog for the Swedish crowd.

The William Borah quotation reminds me of Noam Chomsky. All those geopolitical theorists are so full of themselves. If they had only walked in the shoes of the Kurdish people I'm sure they would come around.

Furthermore a country or a people under occupation has the right to fight for freedom. And no one in their right mind can say that the Turkish government is amicable. So it all boils down to the fact that the Turkish regime doesn't not seek a peacful solution because it's a draconian totalitarian power.

Those who defy the regimes who occupy Kurdistan with methods of non-violence are really paying the price for it too. But yeah when it comes to Tibet and Palestine it's all of a sudden a whole different deal.

Mizgîn said...

Gordon, exactly.

Kawe, Noam Chomsky has been exposing the media for a long time. Martin A. Lee, who did a lot of work exposing the Gray Wolves in connection with the resurrection of fascism, has also helped to expose the media in Unreliable Sources. The Chomsky and Herman book, Manufacturing Consent, I have read and soon I hope to read Lee's book, after finishing his work on fascism.

There was also an article not too long ago in which some of the modern "victories" of pacifism have been refuted. It might also serve as fuel for an argument with political theorists. Here's a quote:

The Madrid bombings do not present an example for action, but rather, an important paradox: Do people who stick to nonviolent tactics that have not proved effective in ending the war against Iraq really care more for human life than the Madrid terrorists? From India to Birmingham, nonviolence has failed to sufficiently empower its practitioners, whereas the use of a diversity of tactics got results. Put simply, if a movement is not a threat, it cannot change a system that is based on centralized coercion and violence.

Time and again, people struggling not for some token reform but for complete liberation -- the reclamation of control over our own lives and the power to negotiate our own relationships with the people and the world around us -- will find that nonviolence does not work, that we face a self-perpetuating power structure that is immune to appeals to conscience and strong enough to plow over the disobedient and uncooperative.


Source here.

Here's the whole point, as far as I'm concerned:

. . . nonviolence has failed to sufficiently empower its practitioners, whereas the use of a diversity of tactics got results.

A diversity of tactics, such as things were when there was an ARGK and an ERNK, with the ERNK as the control and foundation of The Movement, is the key.

Kawe said...

That's a powerful quote Mizgîn, thanks for the link!