between the devil and the deep sea
The current polarization obliges the
people to choose in coming early elections one of the two evils: The
Islamists or The Militarists.
The tension developed for months by the military and
their secular allies, on the one hand, and the Islamists and their
satanic accomplice Tansu Ciller, on the other, has finally led Turkey
to a dilemma which put the people between the devil and the deep sea.
After the resignation of Turkey's first Islamist Prime Minister,
Necmettin Erbakan, President Süleyman Demirel, on June 19, dove into
the difficult task of finding a new government to lead the country to
Erbakan told reporters that, in addition to his
resignation, he presented the president a letter signed by himself, DYP
leader and vice-premier Tansu Ciller and BBP leader Muhsin Yazicioglu.
The letter stated that the three parties have agreed to support Ciller
in forming the new coalition government. The leaders of three parties
claim to have absolute majority in the National Assembly and that the
President should immediately charge Ciller with forming the government.
Under the grave accusations of corruption and
irregularities, Ciller insists on having a coalition with Islamist RP
which had saved herself three times from being sent to the Supreme
However, under the pressure of the military who
absolutely wish the exclusion of the RP from any future
government, President Demirel, instead of naming
Ciller preferred to charge ANAP leader Mesut Yilmaz with
forming a new coalition government.
Although the military's pressure remains the
principal factor in forming the new government, that is a government
without RP, the minority of the total of all opposition deputies in the
National Assembly and the differences among themselves make rather
difficult to assure a new government without having the support of one
of the two partners of the outgoing government.
In the current crisis, President Demirel has to find
a solution acceptable as well by the majority of the following
• Necmettin Erbakan: His Islamist Welfare Party (RP)
is the biggest group in parliament with 156 seats. He is looking to
revamp his coalition with the DYP under Tansu Ciller and believes that
his party, as a victim of the military, will come into power after the
early elections with a greater number of deputies.
• Mesut Yilmaz: Leader of the second largest party
with 129 MPs. Precedent dictated that the president offer Yilmaz the
first chance to form a government after Erbakan's resignation but there
are no certainties. His Motherland Party (ANAP) has almost identical
policies to Ciller's grouping, although a bitter personal rivalry
ruined a short-lived coalition between the pair last June and makes
another similar alliance unlikely. Yilmaz, slow-spoken and earnest, has
been prime minister briefly twice but secularist commentators complain
he lacks the punch needed to tackle the Islamists.
• Tansu Ciller: The most corrupt politician of the
Turkish Republic who shocked many last June by dragging her party into
a coalition with the Islamists. An astute political tactician, she
knows very well that if remains outside the government her political
career will absolutely end. She successfully he persuaded Erbakan to
resign and try to transfer power to her to defuse tension with the
army. Her Correct Way Party (DYP) has 116 MPs and has been beset by
defections among those disillusioned with the pro-Islamic alliance.
• Bülent Ecevit: As prime minister in 1974, Ecevit
gained much popularity for ordering Turkish troops to intervene in
Cyprus. However he failed to unite all social-democrat forces of the
country in a single political party. His Democratic Left Party (DSP) is
the larger of the left-wing parties and has 67 deputies in National
• Deniz Baykal: His left-wing Republican Peoples'
Party (CHP) was founded in the 1920s by Kemal Atatürk and led later on
by Ismet Inönü and Bülent Ecevit. After the 1980 Coup, the CHP lost his
monopoly in centre-left when Ecevit left it and found another party.
The CHP lost its remaining credibility during its coalition with the
DYP, particularly under Ciller's premiership.
• Muhsin Yazicioglu: Former leader of the
ultra-right "Grey Wolves" movement, notorious for street fighting with
left-wingers in the 1970s. Yazicioglu and his seven MPs of Grand Unity
Party (BBP)could hold the balance in a vote of confidence in any new
government. He has announced he would support the effort to resurrect
Erbakan's coalition under Ciller's leadership.
• Hüsamettin Cindoruk: Former speaker of the
National Assembly. He left the DYP in protest against Ciller's
irregularities. His Democratic Turkey Party (DTP) has seven MPs,
defectors from Ciller's faction who were upset at her alliance with the
THE MILITARY'S FINAL STRIKE LEADING TO ERBAKAN'S RESIGNATION
For months, the military have been at odds with the
Islamist-led coalition government. Among the sore points are the
military's belief that the RP is involved with and sanctioning
increasingly Islamist-oriented activities, fundamentalist nepotism and
that the RP has not yielded to the measures recommended by the National
Security Council (MGK) at its Feb. 28 meeting, particularly the
imposition of 8-year continuous education.
The military's criticisms against the government
were in fact parts of a new operation aimed at to justify the
increasing interference of the Army in politics. It is well known that
Islamist rise in Turkey is not the affair of the last one-year Islamist
government but is a phenomenon created for decades by all governments
and even by the military juntas of 1971 and 1980.
In an ultimate campaign to overthrow the government,
the Turkish General Staff held a series of briefings on radical
Islamist activities in Turkey, addressing to high bureaucrats, judges,
public prosecutors, university teachers, trade unions, associations and
At the briefing on June 11, the military said that
if necessary, the Turkish Armed Forces would be used to protect the
country's democratic and secular system that separates the state and
religion, adding that its authority to protect and defend the republic
comes from both Turkish laws and the Constitution. They also claimed
that fast growing Islamist activities aimed at changing the regime in
Turkey, in recent times, had equalled the other biggest threat, the
Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
Following the "Internal Security Operation Concept"
to deal with separatist activities, the "West Operation Concept" and
"West Working Group" have been established to monitor and evaluate
radical fundamentalist activities. According to the Army's spokesmen,
this concept also aims to deal with political Islam in Turkey.
Repeating all information about Islamist movement,
already echoed for years by progressive media, the military called on
the justice to start legal actions against all those who are suspects
of being implicated in Islamist movement.
It is for the first time that even the big
businessmen of Islamic obedience are declared dangerous and the public
institutions are called on to block their funds and to refuse any
contract with them. The chief of staff ordered the armed forces not to
buy supplies from Islamist companies, asserting they were financing the
spread of radical Islam.
What is more, the Chief Prosecutor of the Court of
Cassation, following the military's directives, started a legal action
against at the Constitutional Court for banning the Welfare Party (RP).
Under these circumstances that Erbakan had to resign
from his post in a view to gain a new electoral victory in early
elections before the Constitutional Court bans his party.
Whatsoever be the composition of the new government,
it seems unavoidable to hold early elections, either at the end of this
year or in first months of 1998.
These elections will no doubt turn into a referendum
which puts the people between the devil and the deep sea.
The RP and its allies will present themselves as the
real defenders of democratic civilian rule and ask the people to vote
for themselves to prevent the military's domination. Their victory will
lead to the establishment of an Islamic regime incompatible with the
European standards of democracy and human rights.
On the other side, the anti-RP parties will present
themselves as the defenders of secular regime and Western values and
ask the people to vote for themselves to exclude the Islamists from the
country's political life. Since they, including the social democrat DSP
and CHP, have not the courage to come against the military's
interference, their victory will inevitably lead to the reinforcement
of the military's domination in politics under the guise of promoting
The only chance of Turkey may be the birth of a
third political alternative launched by civilian forces which can come
against both the Islamists and the military with a real political and
social programme conforming to European norms of democracy.
Though there are many signs of the birth of such an
alternative among progressive parties such as the People's Democracy
Party (HADEP), the Freedom and Solidarity Party (ÖDP), the Workers'
Party (IP) and the Democratic Peace Movement (DBH) and particularly in
the circles of human rights, trade unions and associations, its success
will depend on the degree of their will of unity and the degree of the
repressive measures they will be subjected by the Militarists and the
AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL'S NEW REPORT ACCUSING TURKISH REGIME
Amnesty International's annual report, which was
released on June 18, portrayed Turkey as one of the major countries in
the European region where human rights violations continue with vigour.
The report said that torture was still widespread in police stations
and gendarmeries in Turkey.
Covering human rights abuses in 151 countries and
territories during 1996, the report underlined that at least 11 people
had died in custody in Turkey during last year.
The report said that challenging government policies
in the Southeast was a reason for prosecuting writers, journalists and
political activists in Turkey, adding that Articles 168, 169 and 312 of
the Turkish Penal Code were used to prosecute such people.
Among incidents included as examples of human rights
violations was the trial of 184 members of Turkey's literary and
cultural elite for publishing a book, Freedom of Thought.
The report said that Seyfettin Kizilkan, president
of the Diyarbakir Medical Association, had been arrested and charged
with membership of the outlawed PKK but it later became apparent that
his detention was the result of a statement he had made on human rights
to a visiting foreign delegation.
The arrest and trial of Sanar Yurdatapan,
spokesperson for Together for Peace, was also an example of "trial for
thoughts." The AI report claimed the sole reason for Yurdatapan's
imprisonment was his work to further peace and freedom of expression.
[This year he is again in prison as a result of a police plot.]
Referring to allegations of torture, the report
emphasised that victims of torture included those detained for common
criminal offences under the Anti-Terror Law. "Children and juveniles
were among the victims," the report claimed, citing the example of 16
high school detainees who were allegedly tortured while held at Manisa
"The police officers reportedly raped the male
detainees with truncheons and squeezed their testicles, while female
detainees were compelled to undergo forced gynaecological tests and
were threatened with rape," the report said about the allegations of
torture by the 16 detainees.
Metin Göktepe's death was given wide coverage in the
report, which said he had died in January 1996 after being detained by
police while attempting to photograph the funeral of prisoners beaten
to death in an Istanbul prison.
The report also mentioned the second public
statement of the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and
Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, saying it had described
torture as "widespread and a common occurrence in Turkey."
The European Court of Human Rights decision, which
found Turkish security forces responsible for the torture of Zeki Aksoy
in November 1992, also gained a mention in the report. "The ECHR found
Turkish security forces guilty of burning houses in a village in
southeastern Turkey, causing the Kurdish villagers to flee," the report
According to the human rights organization 10
prisoners were beaten to death by gendarmes at Diyarbakir Prison. "The
circumstances, as outlined in a report prepared by the Diyarbakir Bar
Association, strongly suggest that the killings were the consequence of
a premeditated assault by security forces," the report outlined.
The report said the Güclükonak incident, where 11
villagers were machine-gunned and the minibus in which they were
travelling was set on fire in January 1996, was portrayed by the
military and government as a PKK killing. "However, a broad based
delegation organized by Sanar Yurdatapan found evidence that the
villagers had been killed by the security forces, apparently in an
attempt to discredit a unilateral cease-fire declared by the PKK in
December 1995," the report stated.
However, the report also highlighted violence
committed by armed opposition groups, such as the PKK and the
Revolutionary People's Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C), and said they
were responsible for 40 deliberate killings. AI, the report said, had
condemned these abuses and publicly called the armed opposition groups
to respect humanitarian law and international human rights standards.
The report also said that AI had appealed to the
Turkish authorities to release prisoners of conscience and had urged
the government to initiate an impartial investigation into allegations
of torture and extrajudicial executions and "disappearances."
HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS IN MARCH-APRIL-MAY 1997
The following three-month statistics about human
rights violations in Turkey for March, April and May 1997 were taken
from the Human Rights Association of Turkey (IHD):
* 33 people died in unsolved murders.
* 21 people lost their lives through execution
without trial, after torture or while in custody.
* 718 people died in armed clashes.
* Attacks on civilians left 35 dead and 24 injured.
* 30 people "disappeared" while in custody.
* 91 people were tortured or claimed to have been
* 5,812 people were taken into police custody, 98 of
whom from the press.
* 542 people were placed under arrest by courts.
* 6 villages and hamlets were evacuated.
* 45 locations were bombed.
* 25 associations, trade unions and press agencies
* 51 associations, trade unions and press agencies
* 70 publications were confiscated.
* Courts have approved of prison terms exceeding 31
years and fines totalling TL 1.203 billion for opinion.
* At present, there are 150 prisoners of conscience
THE SHAME OF TURKEY: CILLER THE GODMOTHER
Since her coming to power in as minister of economic
affairs and her upgrading to the post of prime minister in 1993, we
have continuously informed the world opinion of her intentions harmful
as well to Turkey as to its friends.
In spite of these warnings, charmed by her modern
look and demagogy, Western institutions supported this doubtful
"Turkish iron lady". Even the European Parliament did not hesitate to
ratify the Customs Union agreement in a view to reinforce her electoral
chance in 1995 general elections under the pretext of obstructing an
Islamist power in the south eastern wing of Europe.
Turkey has been administrated by an Islamist power
with Ciller's support as a recompense of saving herself from giving the
account of her occult relations with Mafia and the mysterious source of
her unbelievable wealth. Turkey, let aside respecting human rights, has
been thrown into an unprecedented chaos created by a never-ending dirty
war in Turkish Kurdistan on the one hand, and on the other, by a
dangerous quarrel between the Islamists and the secular forces, the
Army which carries the responsibility of two bloody coups in 1971 and
1980, resuscitates once more as the real master of the country.
At this point, instead of repeating our remarks on
this shameful lady, we reprint a recent article of the New York Times,
one of America's most influential dailies known for its close links to
the Democratic administration.
The article of April 7, 1997, by Steven Kinzer says:
"Today, Mrs. Ciller is foreign minister and a
leading member of a coalition government headed by a Muslim-based
party. Many Turkish political leaders accuse her of forging the
alliance to shield herself from a series of inquiries into her personal
"Parliamentary investigators, leading political
figures, and Turkish newspapers have been examining how Mrs. Ciller and
her husband, Özer Ciller, became multi-millionaires. They have raised
questions about her statement that she inherited more than $1 million
in cash and gold from her mother, a woman whose former neighbours have
described as a penniless pensioner.
"Mrs. Ciller's critics have also examined the
purchase of $1.5-million worth of properties in New Hampshire by an
American company headed by her husband. They assert that Mr. and Mrs.
Ciller enriched themselves through illicit use of government funds in
her years as prime minister from 1993 to 1996.
"Some opposition figures have even suggested that
Mrs. Ciller once held American citizenship, which if true could
complicate her political position here. They have sued in federal court
in New York to obtain her passport records.
"While the United States has declined to confirm or
deny the existence of such documents, it is fighting the legal action.
The State Department has said that disclosing any foreign official's
passport records could cause "great disadvantage, and perhaps personal
and familial danger, abroad.
"Mrs. Ciller has denied any wrongdoing. Tim Platt,
her New Hampshire lawyer, said she has never held an American passport
or been an American citizen. Platt also said that her investments in
the United States comply fully with American law.
"But is it true?
"Some aspects of Mrs. Ciller's rise to the status of
a multi-millionaire, however, remain unclear. She has said, for
example, that some of her wealth stems from wise investment of the $1.1
million inheritance from her mother, who died in 1995."
"But neighbours of Muazzez Ciller said last week
that she had lived near poverty in a shabby Istanbul apartment, and
doubted that she could have left such a substantial sum.
"'This poor woman was sick and barely had enough to
eat,' said one resident of the building where the elder Mrs. Ciller
lived. 'She used to do her shopping, wash her dishes, and help her cook
because she couldn't afford a maid. She got in trouble with the
landlord because she was always late with the rent. If she had any
money, I'm sure she would have used it to make her life a little
"Platt said that the elder Mrs. Ciller had made
'personal and life style choices' not to spend her savings. The fact
that she held cash at home or in a safe deposit box is not inconsistent
with the practice of people in her society at the time.
"Questions about Mrs. Ciller's finances were of
little interest outside Turkey until June, when she astonished many
world leaders by agreeing to join in a coalition government with the
Islamic-oriented Welfare Party. Until then, she had bitterly attacked
Welfare, calling it a fundamentalist threat and vowing never to
cooperate with it. Under the coalition agreement, the Welfare Party
leader, Necmettin Erbakan, became prime minister and Mrs. Ciller became
deputy prime minister and foreign minister.
"After the alliance was sealed, Erbakan's supporters
in Parliament helped Mrs. Ciller defeat a series of proposals -- some
of which they themselves had filed while in opposition -- that would
have referred questions about her wealth to the Supreme Court.
"This has led critics to charge that a deal has been
struck under which Mrs. Ciller keeps the Welfare party in power and, in
exchange, it protects her against judicial investigation."
"Charges of corruption and abuse of power began to
swirl around Mrs. Ciller as she ended her term as prime minister. In
recent months, the charges have become a major topic of public
discussion. This year, Mrs. Ciller has faced a series of parliamentary
votes on charges that she illicitly diverted funds from several
government-owned companies, including an electric utility, an auto
manufacturer, and a hotel chain. The closest vote, however, came not on
motions based directly on those charges but on one that asked the
Supreme Court to investigate the source of her wealth.
"Mrs. Ciller agreed to an interview in February to
discuss the charges against her, but cancelled it moments after
Parliament voted 270-263 not to send charges against her to the Supreme
Court. The vote was along party lines. Afterward, her office provided a
statement that said: 'The parliamentary commission conducted an
extensive inquiry into Mrs. Ciller's finances, releasing publicly
numerous confidential tax returns and financial documents which she
provided voluntarily. The commission issued a report of over 300 pages
and cleared her of any improprieties. The Parliament has confirmed that
finding and the matter is now closed.'
"Parliamentary inquiries into two other allegations,
which were clearly of a political nature, have also resulted in a
finding that she acted properly. She has been fully cleared of all
charges. No other inquiries involving Mrs. Ciller are now pending."
"Under Turkish law, Parliament cannot reopen any
investigation within one year after it has been closed. But some Turks
believe the charges against Mrs. Ciller will not fade away.
"'These dossiers will be opened sooner or later and
taken to an independent judiciary,' predicted Mehmet Kececiler, deputy
chairman of the opposition Motherland party.
"Many former allies of Mrs. Ciller say they are
furious at her for having formed a coalition with the Islamic party
against which she had campaigned so strenuously. Among them is
Hüsamettin Cindoruk, one of the patriarchs of Turkish politics, who is
a former chairman of her Correct Way Party and served as president of
Parliament from 1991-95.
"'Tansu Ciller is what allowed the Welfare party to
come to power,' Cindoruk said. 'She agreed to form a coalition with
Welfare because they promised they would shield her from
investigations. This has brought great trouble to Turkey.
"Turkish news reports based on reviews of the
Cillers' property holdings here, which include homes, apartment
buildings, and large plots of land, put their net worth in the tens of
millions of dollars. Mrs. Ciller says that she and her husband built
their fortune largely from the inheritance from her mother and another
of several hundred thousand dollars from her father.
"Among the Ciller family's investments was the
purchase in the early 1990s of a Holiday Inn in Salem, N.H., and the
Granite State Business Centre, in Hooksett, N.H. The property was
bought by GCD, a New Hampshire company. Ciller and his family have a
controlling interest in the company, according to Platt, the New
"The $1-million purchase was paid for with five
treasurer's checks drawn on The Bank of New Hampshire, according to
copies of the checks provided by the Turkish opposition. Platt declined
to say how that money was raised, and whether it was borrowed."
"Mrs. Ciller attended colleges and taught for a time
in the United States, but she has steadfastly denied reports that she
held a U.S. passport for a time. Her lawyer, Platt, said she could not
have done so because she lived in the United States for less than the
required five years."
"A New York lawyer who represents a member of the
Turkish parliamentary commission that investigated Mrs. Ciller, Jerrold
Morgulas, has filed suit in federal court seeking release of Mrs.
Ciller's passport and immigration records. A federal judge hearing the
case expressed deep scepticism about that suit in a recent hearing."
"In addition to the accusations of financial
impropriety, Mrs. Ciller has been touched by one of the most serious
scandals in recent Turkish history, which began unfolding in November
when a senior police official was killed in a car crash along with a
convicted heroin smuggler who was being sought by Interpol.
"Also in the car was an influential member of
Parliament from Mrs. Ciller's party. Questions about what they were
doing together quickly resulted in the resignation of the interior
minister, a close ally of Mrs. Ciller, and led to a series of
revelations about government sponsorship of death squads over the last
"Several of the most spectacular 'mystery killings'
occurred while Mrs. Ciller was prime minister, and some politicians say
they suspect officials of her government may have ordered or approved
them. Many of the victims were suspected of maintaining ties to the
separatist guerrilla army that calls itself the Kurdistan Workers
Party, or PKK.
"Evidence that has come to light since November
suggests that senior government officials approved such killings. There
has been no proof that Mrs. Ciller was involved, but several political
figures have publicly accused her.
"'In November 1993, Mrs. Ciller said at a press
conference that she had a list of businessmen, artists, and other
people who were helping the PKK,' said Esat Canan, who was a member of
Parliament at the time. 'She said she was going to eliminate this
problem. After that, people started to get killed one after another. I
think there is a connection. If she knew the names of people who were
guilty of illegal acts, why didn't she have them brought to trial?
"This year, officials of several European
governments have charged that Turkish drug traffickers seem to have
enjoyed official protection. 'There have been incidents where
information definitely got back to drug dealers,' said Tom Sackville, a
British Home Office minister.
"A German judge who was hearing a case against three
accused Turkish heroin smugglers told reporters in January that he
believed the smugglers had 'personal contacts' with Mrs. Ciller."
Furious at the fiasco in its last Iraq operation, the Turkish Army
declares all neighbour countries "enemies"
Just after launching its anti-Islamist operation
inside, the Turkish Army started a new very extensive military
operation in Northern Iraq on pretext to annihilate the remnants of the
PKK guerrillas. Although the Turkish General Staff claims to have
killed thousands of Kurdish guerrillas in this operation led by the
land and air forces, the operation failed in disaster according to
recent press reports. The PKK spokesmen denied the Turkish claims and
reported heavy losses in the ranks of Turkish forces.
Reuters reports on June 11 that "two deadly missile
strikes against Turkish helicopters over northern Iraq have threatened
to rewrite the military and political rules of engagement in the army's
12-year battle with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK)."
"The admission by the authorities that Kurdish SA-7
missiles brought down two Turkish helicopters, Cougar and Cobra, has
rocked Turkey's elite armed forces and touched off a nasty round of
finger-pointing. It has also raised the spectre of a humiliating
pull-back from direct confrontation with the PKK, reminiscent of the
Soviet retreat from Afghanistan once U.S.-made Stinger missiles allowed
the mujaheddin to deny the Russians control of the air," said Reuters.
The Turkish generals immediately accused the
Islamist-led government of under-funding the Iraq operation, part of a
multi-billion dollar annual allocation for anti-PKK activities.
The generals also slammed the foreign ministry for
not preventing the PKK from getting hold of up to 60 Russian-made SA-7
A leading general said that the army had warned
diplomats five times since 1992 that the separatists were receiving
armaments from Iran, Syria, Armenia, Greece and Cyprus.
The said countries have immediately reacted against
this claim and accused the Turkish military of spoiling good relations
between the neighbours.
On the other hand, the Turkish military operation in
Iraq has led to big reaction in Iran, Iraq, Syria and other Arab
countries who accused Turkey of trying to extend its domination in the
region in complicity with the United States and Israel.
IP LEADER PERINCEK:"CILLER WORKS FOR THE CIA"
The Workers Party (IP) leader Dogu Perincek, holding
a press conference in Istanbul on May 2, claimed that Deputy Prime
Minister and Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller has been working for the CIA
since 1967. According to Perincek, as going to the United States in
1967 to for further study following her graduation from Robert College
Economy Department in Istanbul. Ciller also applied to the Embassy and
said that she was ready to "take duty" for the interests of the USA,
which enabled her to achieve scholarship for her education in this
Perincek also said:
- She was admitted to America with a special visa
given by the Ambassador to special people under extraordinary
conditions. She received her green card on August 10, 1970 with the
number of A 149 33 25 N 95 the year she completed her post graduate
education at Connecticut University.
- Ciller was specially trained by the CIA in Camp
Peary in Virginia, and learned to lie well there.
- Ciller was listed under the "walk in" staff of the
CIA on which volunteer applications to the organization are listed and
she is valued as an "asset", a name given to certain type of CIA agents
who will be valuable for CIA in their own country.
- Ciller was appointed to the Near East and North
African Table of the Foreign Affairs Ministry of the USA as an "invited
personnel" after completing her doctorate and training in Camp Peary.
Ciller told her friends that she was going to skiing in the winter of
1973, and went to Libya for a special CIA mission. The mission was
undercover with an agricultural project marketing.
- Kaddafi stated in the recent past that his
friendship with Ciller goes back years. Ciller went to other North
African countries as a personnel of the American Foreign Ministry after
this first trip to Libya. Ciller visited Kaddafi in his tent in 1992
while she was serving as the State Minister in charge of Economy. This
visit was exceeding the boundaries of the ministry she was responsible
- Ciller applied for American citizenship in April
23, 1973. Her application was accepted on May 3, 1973. Her references
were CIA Aliens Information Department, FBI and Foreign Ministry Bureau
of Research and Investigation. She was accepted to the citizenship in
1979 with the special letter of the CIA President and with the number
Ph 195 000 318. There are serious obstacles in front of USA
citizenship. She came over these obstacles with the special letter of
the CIA president. Concerned law authorizes CIA president directly to
require citizenship from the Justice Ministry.
- She has been making periodical reportings to the
CIA about the anti-American activities in Turkey. Her reports to the
USA has been printed in the newspapers,
- USA Adana Consul Elizabeth Shelton was Ciller's
colleague and a very important name in her life. Their friendship
started in the USA Foreign Ministry in 1971. Shelton is a CIA personnel
as well and the organizer of the General Esref Bitlis assassination in
1994. It is known that Adana Consulate is the Kurdish Bureau of the USA.
Perincek concluded that Ciller's connection with the
CIA can not be covered anymore and it is a big responsibility and shame
that CIA attends National Security Council and Cabinet meetings in
HADEP LEADERS SENTENCED TO HEAVY PRISON TERMS
The Ankara State Security Court, on June 4,
sentenced the leaders of the People's Democracy Party (HADEP) to heavy
prison terms on charges of "having links with the outlawed Kurdistan
Workers' Party (PKK). Moreover, the SSC announced that an indictment to
close down the party would be sent to the Court of Cassation because of
this alleged connection.
The case grew out of incidents that occurred during
HADEP's second general congress on June 23 last year, when the Turkish
flag was torn down by an individual at the meeting.
Yusuf Alatas, HADEP's attorney, said that the result
of the trial was predictable as the case was completely political.
Alatas also said that they would take the case to the European Court of
Nearly 30 members of HADEP were sentenced to four
years in prison for "assisting the terrorists." The chairman of the
party, Murat Bozlak, and Hikmet Fidan both received a sentence of six
years. Bozlak has reportedly been abroad for some time.
Faysal Akcan, who was accused of pulling down the
flag at the congress, was sentenced to 22 years in prison. Security
officials who were present in the hall during the party congress will
also be indicted on the grounds that they did not show any objections
to the flag being pulled down, court officials said.
The police arrested the leading members of the party
shortly after the congress last year and the prosecutor brought charges
HADEP was established in 1994 after the Democracy
Party (DEP) was closed by the constitutional court for alleged
separatism and 13 of its deputies were expelled from Parliament. Four
DEP members are still imprisoned for having links with the outlawed PKK.
MHP CONGRESS INTERRUPTED BY VIOLENCE OF GREY WOLVES
In a few weeks after Alparslan Türkes' death, the
ultra-nationalist movement of Grey Wolves has shown its real face and
restarted violence within its own ranks. The Nationalist Action Party's
(MHP) tense congress on May 18, which was held to choose the party's
next chairman, ended in fistfights and was ultimately postponed.
Quarrels erupted as five MHP leadership candidates -- Devlet Bahceli,
Ramiz Ongun, Muharrem Semsek, Enis Öksüz and Ibrahim Ciftci -- united
against the remaining candidate, Tugrul Türkes, son of the late MHP
The second round of voting was postponed after the
convention broke out in violence that included gunfire. The congress
will be repeated in one to two months' time.
Tensions rose during the congress as delegates fell
out over who would chair the congress. MHP member Erzincan Mayor Talip
Kaban was supported by all candidates except Türkes and was eventually
elected as congress chairman.
After the first round of voting for the party
leadership, Türkes received 412 votes while Bahceli won 359, Angina
231, Öksüz 104, Semsek 80, and Ciftci 13 votes. After the results were
announced the other four candidates withdrew in favour of Bahceli. With
that, Tugrul Türkes said the other candidates were fearful of Bahceli's
strength and pledged to continue the race by himself.
Meanwhile, it was reported that a group including
Azmi Karamahmutoglu, the former head of the MHP's youth branch, arrived
on the scene and started to demolish chairs and desks. Karamahmutoglu
took the microphone by force and said he and his group would not
surrender the party to "traitors" and would be acting outside of the
law from now on.
Later, Karamahmutoglu's supporters began fighting
with those of Bahceli and five gunshots were heard during the strife.
Security forces had difficulty controlling the situation. Several
television reporters were said to be injured, some having had their
cameras broken. The authorities later postponed the congress.
After the first round of votes, Türkes is said to
have no chance to be elected since the votes he received amounted to a
third of the total delegates' votes while an absolute majority is
required to win. Bahceli is expected to win the second round (out of a
possible three) since the other candidates are now supporting him. But
a declaration by the party's Ülkücü (idealists) group that it will not
recognize the results of the next congress, indicates that severe and
perhaps even bloodier clashes within the MHP may be in the offing.
An official statement by the MHP next day said that
the congress would resume no earlier than a month, and no later than
two months from now. It said the congress had started in a highly
charged atmosphere and that later the delegates had reacted emotionally
to the alliance formed against Türkes.
SUSURLUK SUSPECTS SAVED ONCE AGAIN BY THE PARLIAMENTARY MAJORITY
A Parliamentary commission on May 20 deferred its
decision to remove the immunity of two DYP deputies, Mehmet Agar and
Sedat Bucak, whose names were implicated in the Susurluk scandal until
a Constitutional amendment limiting the scope of parliamentary immunity
The joint Constitution and Justice Commission voted
to postpone deliberating 62 cases requesting the removal of
parliamentary immunity, including those of Sedat Bucak and Mehmet Agar,
until article 83 of the Constitution is amended.
The True Path Party (DYP), in spite of resistance
from its Islamist coalition partner, had come to an agreement with
opposition parties to limit the scope of legislative immunity. However,
since then, the government parties have blocked the amendment proposal
from being voted on the Parliament floor and observers believe there is
a low probability that the amendment will be approved.
The parliamentary commission also voted to form a
sub-commission specifically to look into the Bucak and Agar cases. It
has been learned that coalition deputies, along with Metin Emiroglu
from the Motherland Party (ANAP), voted in favour of postponing a
decision on Agar and Bucak.
Opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) group
chairwoman Oya Arasli said the decision to postpone lifting the
immunity of the two deputies was the latest attempt to cover up
Susurluk. Arasli added that the decision was in contravention of the
Constitution and Standing Orders of Parliament.
The RP holds the lead in the number of requests to
lift the immunity of its members, with 29 cases brought against its
deputies, including Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan. The DYP is facing
7 requests, the CHP 6, and ANAP 16.
USAGE OF LANGUAGES OTHER THAN TURKISH TO BE BANNED
A new bill to enforce correct usage of Turkish
language was submitted to the government at the beginning of this year.
If the bill is accepted by the National Assembly, businesses, stores,
products, goods and services will have to be labelled only in Turkish
The Turkish dictionary of the Turkish Language
Institute (TDK) will be used as the basis for Turkish names.
Public and private institutions will have to use
Turkish in all agreements, documents, meetings and promotions.
The media is also included in the new legislation,
and those not following the new rules will be subject to fines. TV
announcers and hosts will have to obey certain regulations on language
A general language monitoring committee and sub
committees in the cities will be formed to monitor the use of Turkish
in advertisements and promotions.
The new regulations:
* Businesses that use a second language for
their logos and signs will have to write the foreign names after the
Turkish name and will have to use half of the space that the Turkish
names use. Companies and stores who use foreign names, however, will
have to pay taxes four times higher than what they pay for Turkish
* Turkish names will also be mandatory for products,
goods and services, their introduction, billing and promotion, with the
TDK's Turkish dictionary the basis for naming brands, products, goods
* All advertisements, commercials and promotions
will be made in Turkish. Those which do not will be subject to heavy
fines. All public and private institutions will have to use Turkish in
all their activities and documentation.
* Language Monitoring Committees will monitor all
publications regarding grammar, punctuation and pronunciation.
* In case of incorrect usage of the language, the
publication and media organizations will be fined and persistent
offences will result in the banning of the publication or broadcast for
between one and 15 days.
* Announcers on radio and TV will have to be
certified, the certificate being issued by a "Speaker Certification
* Publication and visual media organizations will
have to employ between one and 10 Turkish language experts.
The Turkish Young Businessmen Association (TUGIAD)
leader, Murat Bedik, said that correct usage of Turkish could not be
encouraged through law enforcement. He stated that the problem was
based in the education system and added: "Societies possess their
languages parallel to the level of their development. If we think
Turkish is not used correctly, we should increase the level of
development. The solution for this is not law enforcement but education
TURKISH PRIME MINISTER: ONE OF THE MAIN ENEMIES OF THE PRESS
Turkish prime minister Necmettin Erbakan was
declared, at the beginning of May, one of the ten top enemies of the
press in the world by the Committee to protect Journalists (CPJ)
in the United States. In a related development, Freedom House, another
non-profit organization which monitors political rights and civil
liberties around the world, called Turkey in its recent global survey
of press freedoms as a country in which the press was "not free."
The list of CPJ's top ten "enemies of free press" is
1. Algeria's Antar Zouabri. 2. China's President
Jiang Zemin 3. Cuba's President Fidel Castro. 4. Nigeria's General Sani
Abacha. 5. Turkey's Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan. 6. Belarus's
President Alexander Lukashenko. 7. Ethiopia's Prime Minister Meles
Zenawi. 8. Indonesia's President Suharto. 9. Burma's Senior General
Than Shwe. 10. Albania's President Sali Berisha.
CPJ explained why Erbakan was placed on this list as
"Erbakan keeps up Turkey's repression of independent
journalists," CPJ claimed. "The press remains under threat from the
sweeping provisions of the anti-terror law and the penal code, which
permit the arrest and prosecution of journalists for critical reporting
on the government's ongoing conflict with Kurdish insurgents."
"Broadening his assault, he increasingly subjects
journalists to arbitrary detention and trial for expression of
unfavorable political opinions. Under Erbakan's regime, 78 journalists
were in jail at the beginning of 1997 -- more than in any other
country," the CPJ report said.
Turkey was included by Freedom House (FH) in the
category of countries in which the press is not free. The report on
"Press Freedom 1997: Law Epidemic" placed Turkey in the same class with
some countries where the press does not exist like Saudi Arabia,
Central African Republic, Yemen, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Syria,
Zambia, Togo, Oman, Niger, Laos, etc.
Turkish broadcasting and printed press, according to
FH, especially suffered from "laws and regulations that influence media
content" as well as the "political pressures and controls on media
5 May 1997
CILLER DECLARES WAR ON THE BIGGEST MEDIA GROUPS
Ankara-Long at odds with the media, Deputy Prime
Minister Ciller effectively launched an acrimonious war on the two main
media groups in Turkey over the weekend.
Addressing a crowd of supporters in Istanbul on May
10 Ciller accused the "media cartel" of trying to take the "public's
power into its own hands" by calling for "this government to go and
that government to come."
The DYP leader also had disparaging words for KOC
Holding, one of Turkey's largest holding companies with manufacturing
concerns from automobiles to electronics, white goods and other
"Would you surrender to a government to be formed by
monopolistic capital and a cartel of the media?" Ciller asked a crowd
of about 6,000 to 10,000 supporters.
Ciller went on to reveal figures allegedly
representing hundreds of millions of dollars of incentive credits to
the Aydin Dogan Group -- which owns daily Hürriyet and Milliyet -- and
the Dinc Bilgin Group -- representing daily Sabah.
She said that the Dogan Group had received $424.8
million, while the Bilgin Group got $200.4 million in incentive credits
from the state.
She said that these credits represented nearly 90
percent of all the credits given the media in general in Turkey.
She also said that the Koc group, which she
maintains is behind the Dogan and Bilgin groups, had itself received
$311 million in state export incentive credits.
Both media groups, which have a host of subsidiary
publications, were quick to respond to Ciller's accusations by accusing
her of "lying" and giving their own facts concerning her allegations.
"She can't get enough of lies," screamed Hürriyet's
banner headline. "Ciller's lie," yelled Milliyet's headline. "She is
lying," Sabah shouted in its own banner headline.
The Dogan group, in its official response to Ciller
published on May 11, said it would take her to court for "misleading
the public and demeaning the group's good name by means of a false
FLASH TV ATTACKED BY CILLER'S PARTISANS
On 2 May 1997, a group of some 50 unidentified armed
assailants entered the Flash TV's Istanbul office and opened fire,
shooting randomly. The armed men fled the scene after the attack, which
lasted approximately five minutes, according to witnesses. Although no
one was injured during the incident, the office sustained substantial
damage. According to several reports, the attackers,
who shouted threats at station employees during the attack, appeared to
have been motivated by a live telephone interview with fugitive
organized crime figure Alaattin Cakici which had been aired on Flash TV
the previous day. In the interview, Cakici implicated the husband of
Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller in financial improprieties and contacts
with the criminal underworld.
In another disturbing development, Turkish police
sealed Flash TV's headquarters in Bursa the following day, forcing the
station off the air. They cited the station's alleged improper
licensing for its satellite up-links as the reason for their action.
Currently, Flash TV has been able to resume broadcasting through
alternate transmission methods, but has been deprived of using its
satellite up-links, severely curtailing its viewing audience.
ATTEMPTED ATTACK ON OFFICE OF HÜRRIYET
On the morning of 12 May 1997, Huseyin Vuran, a
theology student at the University of Marmara, entered the building
which houses the office of the daily Hürriyet and, armed with a knife,
threatened the guard and seized his gun. Vuran then made his way to the
fifth floor of the building and shot a maintenance worker in the leg
after the worker refused to tell him where Hürriyet's office was
located. Vuran later gave himself up to police, at which point he was
taken to the police's anti-terrorist section in Istanbul.
On 20 May 1997, three unidentified individuals
arrived on foot at the building which houses the daily Sabah and the
privately-owned television channel ATV, two media outlets which are
part of the Istanbul-based Sabah media group.
The individuals, who were armed, opened fire on the
building's windows; however, nobody was injured. The individuals fled
on foot. Police have opened an investigation into the attack.
DEMOKRASI NEWSPAPER SHUT DOWN BY THE ISTANBUL SSC
The Demokrasi newspaper, which mainly focuses on
human rights issues and Kurdish problem, was closed on May 3 for one
month by a decision of the Istanbul State Security Court.
In a statement released by the newspaper, the
decision was condemned in following terms:
"The state, who wants to silence all opposition,
closed our paper on International Press Freedom Day because of an
article entitled 'Direnisin Sonrasi,' ('After the Resistance')."
Since 1992, pro-Kurdish dailies Özgür Gündem, Özgür
Ülke and Yeni Politika have also been shut down by SSC decisions.
EIGHT JOURNALISTS CHARGED BY GOVERNMENT
The Ministry of Justice has initiated legal
proceedings against eight journalists over articles, published in
April, which are deemed to be "calls to insurrection and a coup
d'Etat". The journalists in question are: Ertugrul Kürkcü of the daily
Radikal; Necati Dogru and Fatih Cekirge and cartoonist Salih Memecan of
the daily Sabah; Bekir Coskun of Hürriyet; Murat Birsel of the daily
Yeni Yüzyil; Ömer Tarkan of the daily Posta; and Mustafa Basoglu of the
daily Son Cagri, who is the author of an article published on 28 April
in the daily Yeni Asir.
The legal actions taken against these journalists
follow comments by Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan in which he
publicly criticised the media for "publishing lies" and creating a
"fake crisis" in their critical coverage of political developments
relating to the coalition government. On 6 May, in
an address to members of Parliament, Erbakan expressed his intention to
draft a new libel law in order to place legal restraints on outspoken
journalists, a proposal previously discussed in late 1996 and later
postponed following protests from several newspapers.
CONCERN FOR HEALTH OF DETAINED PUBLISHER MARASLI
Publisher Recep Marasli, who has been under arrest
since 6 March 1997, is now on trial. In hiding since late 1995, he was
arrested at Istanbul airport as he attempted to flee the country. He
had been convicted on at least three charges under the anti-terror law
for statements published in Sterka Rizgari, a publication said by the
authorities to support terrorism.
Marasli is currently detained for having used
another person's passport to facilitate his unsuccessful attempt to
flee the country. The legitimate passport holder was briefly detained
on 6 March, and is now free. Trial on the charges of false passport is
still ongoing, as are legal proceedings related to his writings. The
next hearing on the latter charges was due to be held on 29 May 1997.
Detained on political charges from 1982 to 1991,
Marasli is said to have been severely tortured during that time,
resulting in critical neurological disorder. He is said to be extremely
ill. The main reason for his attempt to flee Turkey was to receive
PRESS DENIED ACCESS TO FOURTH HEARING IN GOKTEPE CASE
On 28 May 1997, the fourth hearing in the trial of
the police officers accused of the murder of journalist Metin Goktepe
was held in Afyon. At the beginning, the court decided to force
journalists out of the courtroom, even after objections from those
involved in the case and the plaintiffs' lawyers. Some of the lawyers
left the courtroom to allow room for the journalists, but the court
held its ground.
In response to the request of the lawyers for
Göktepe's family, the judge in the case ordered the arrest of five of
the eleven police officers charged. They are: Seydi Battal Köse (one of
the chiefs of police for the district of Eyup), Selcuk Bayraktaroglu,
Saffet Hizarci, Suayip Mutluer and Ilhan Sarioglu. These men now need
to be found since, as of the first hearing on 18 October 1996, very
contradictory information has been circulating as to the whereabouts of
the eleven accused. RSF now hopes that, for the first time, some of the
officers charged will be present in court in the next hearing,
scheduled for 26 June 1997.
TURKEY'S FOREIGN TRADE DEFICIT INCREASED IN 1996
After months of waiting, the 1996 trade figures have
finally come out and the news is not good for Turkey, with the trade
deficit rising to $19.382 billion, a 37.7 percent increase on the
deficit in 1995.
The figures have been delayed due to new ways of
counting trade after the introduction of the EU-Turkey customs union on
Jan. 1 1996.
According to figures released by the State Institute
of Statistics on May 27, imports for 1996 climbed to $42.464 billion,
up from $35.709 billion for 1995, while Turkey only exported $23.082
billion, leaving a trade deficit for the period of $19.382 billion.
Compared to December 1995, exports for the month
fell 0.1 percent, while imports increased 5.2 percent, leading to an
increase in the monthly deficit from $1.921 billion in December 1995 to
$2.150 billion for December 1996.
Turkish agricultural exports increased by 16.9
percent, industrial exports by 5.7 percent, while mining exports fell
by 5.9 percent.
A huge 53.4 percent of Turkish imports in 1996 were
raw materials, 31 percent plant equipment and 15.6 percent were
The EU-Turkey customs union, which came into effect
on Jan. 1 1996, could be said to have had a great effect on the
figures. Imports for early 1996 were inflated due to Turkish importers
preferring to wait in late 1995 until certain tariffs were lowered or
abolished with the coming of the customs union, but this does not
explain the large rise in the deficit over the last few months of the
The European Union seems to have gained the most
from the customs union, with Turkey importing 32.5 percent more from
the EU in 1996 than in 1997, while only managing to increase exports to
the EU by 3.7 percent. The EU accounted for 52.6 percent of all Turkish
imports and 49.8 of all exports in 1996.
Germany remains Turkey's biggest trading partner
with Turkey exporting $5.168 billion-worth of goods, and importing
Italy came in second on the list of Turkey's biggest
export markets in 1996, with Turkey exporting $1.616 billion-worth of
goods. Italy was followed by Russia, the United States and then Britain.
Italy was also second on the list of Turkey's
biggest import countries, with Turkey importing $4.175 billion-worth of
goods. Next came the United States, followed by France and then Britain.
45,000 KURDS DEMONSTRATED IN GERMANY FOR END TO SOUTHEAST CONFLICT
Around 45,000 Kurds demonstrated in the western
German city of Düsseldorf on April 27 for a peaceful solution to
the conflict between Turks and Kurds in southeastern Turkey.
Speakers urged Germany to put pressure on Turkey to
enter negotiations with Kurdish groups including the Kurdistan Workers'
Party (PKK), which is waging an armed resistance against the Turkish
Germany is home to over 400,000 Kurds, and Kurdish
militants have frequently staged violent protests in the country to
draw attention to their cause, leading to the banning of the PKK in
Germany as well.
Police said this latest demonstration had been
peaceful, and they declined to confiscate banned PKK banners and
insignia to avoid provoking a confrontation.
But earlier in the day a nearby motorway was blocked
for 90 minutes as border police stopped seven buses bringing
demonstrators to the rally, confiscating banners and flags and
detaining one wanted person.
US ACCUSES TURKEY OF POCKETING LOOTED NAZI GOLD
In Washington, Stuart Eizenstat, undersecretary of
commerce for international trade and special envoy of the State
Department, said on May 7 that neutral countries such as Switzerland
and Turkey kept much of the gold they received from Nazi Germany during
World War II.
In a State Department report entitled "U.S. and
Allied Efforts to Recover and Restore Gold and Other Assets Stolen or
Hidden by Germany During World War II" concluded that the neutral
nations had "cooperated with Nazi Germany for their own economic
Argentina, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland,
Turkey are among the countries studied in the report.
There was enough evidence that "the Nazis had hidden
assets in Turkey and used it as a centre of espionage during the war to
warrant Safehaven controls," the report said. "Furthermore, the United
States believed that the Nazi Ambassador to Turkey, Franz von Papen,
had secreted Turkey at the end of his tenure gold pieces, other
valuables, and documents that could bear on the Nuremberg trials."
Beginning on January 25, 1945, the U.S. government,
via the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, apparently made several attempts to
"warn" and "convince" Turks that "they should reserve German assets for
disposition in accordance with Allied policy." Turkey did not respond
in a way that satisfied the Allies.
As of 1946, the U.S. State Department figured that
"there were $28 million to $44 million in private, and $23 million in
state assets, against which Turkey was demanding a total of $15.5
million in compensation" for its own claims against Germany.
STATE TERRORISM IN APRIL-MAY 1997
1.3, in Istanbul, teachers Mahmut Öktem and Memnune
Öktem are reportedly kept under police arrest since February 27.
3.3, the Chairman of the Democracy and Peace Party
(DBP), Refik Karakoc, is taken into police custody at the Diyarbakir
airport. Eighty university students are expelled from student campus
on charges of having participated in a protest action.
4.3, in Istanbul, two children, 12 and 13-year old,
are subjected to torture and sexually harassed after their detention on
charges of theft. 16 Kurdish peasants from the Refahiye District are
brought before the Erzincan SSC for giving aid to the PKK.
5.3, seven people are brought before the Istanbul
SSC on charges of being DHKP-C members and having prepared an attempt
upon former military junta chief General Kenan Evren. Three of the
defendants face capital punishment. The Mayor of Dicle in Diyarbakir,
Behrun Aygörun (RP) is detained for giving support to the PKK. In
Adana, Grey Wolves attack a group of citizens protesting against
State-Mafia relations. The Istanbul SSC sentences Özlem Erkek to
three years and nine months in prison for aiding the DHKP/C. The
Malatya SSC sentences Davut Avci to life-prison for aiding the PKK.
In Adana, teachers Günay Resit Sertasar and Sevgi Sertasar are placed
under arrest by a tribunal for having relations with the Revolutionary
Communist Party of Turkey (TDKP). Security forces shoot dead two
children of the Adsiz family as playing on a bridge near to the village
of Arican in Urfa.
6.3, the chairman of the Anti-War Association of
Izmir (ISKD), Osman Murat Ülke is again sentenced to a five-month
imprisonment by a military court of Eskisehir for having refused to
wear military uniform at the Birecik Gendarmerie Training Regiment N°9
to where he was sent, by the decision of the Military Court of General
Staff, to purge his compulsory military service. The Avcilar local
office of the HADEP in Istanbul is raided by security forces and
chairman Mehmet Toguc is detained together with six other party members.
7.3, twenty political prisoners belonging to the PKK
and the MLKP escaped from the special prison of Iskenderun by digging a
tunnel. Former DEP deputy Mahmut Alinak is sentenced by a penal court
in Sirnak to six months in prison and a fine of TL 60 thousand for
having given a speech in Kurdish language in 1991 electoral campaign.
The prison term is later commuted to a fine of TL 900 thousand.
9.3, the Mayor of the Esendere Quarters of Hakkari,
Tahir Akarsu is detained by police in Ankara together with his brother.
10.3, in Istanbul, Osman Gültekin claims to
have been tortured for twelve days after his detention on August
20, 1996. He is still incapable to use his arms because of torture.
IHD Aydin chairman Abdurrahman Saran and the chairman of the Headmen's
Association, Hikmet Ersoy, are indicted for a press release concerning
the trial of policemen accused of having assassinated journalist Metin
11.3, in Istanbul, six people are placed under
arrest for PKK activities. In Istanbul, 19-year old Nesin Celik is
found assassinated. In Izmit, the local chairman of the Municipal
Employees' Trade Union (Belediye-Is), Remzi Polat is detained together
with ten people on charges of being DHKP/C members.
12.3, in Ankara, HADEP Gaziosmanpasa office is
destroyed by unidentified assailants throwing a molotof-cocktail. In
Izmir, HADEP officials Lezgin Biyan and Ismail Kaya are taken to police
custody. In Malatya, HADEP provincial chairman Mustafa Türk is taken
into custody together with 12 human rights activists for a press
released issued on March 8 on the occasion of the World Women's Day.
Grey Wolves attack left-wing students at the Hacettepe University in
Ankara and a group of female students in Kirklareli. Two persons in
Diyarbakir and two other persons in Istanbul are found assassinated.
14.3, the Istanbul SSC places under arrest six
people for being members of the Revolutionary Communists' Union of
Turkey (TIKB). A penal court of Istanbul starts to try 433 high
school students for an open air press conference that they held in 1996
for protesting the Higher Education Board (YÖK).
15.3, in Savur (Mardin), 30-year old woman Hatice
Güler is shot dead in the street by a military patrol.
16.3, security forces opening fire on a car in
Antalya shoot dead 37-year old Ibrahim Etli and wound a woman. A
former IHD official, Mustafa Tüm is taken to police custody and beaten
during is interrogation.
17.3, in Isparta, university student Ertan Dag
claims to have been tortured by police agents forcing him to turn into
an informer. the Erzurum SSC sentences five members of the Revolution
Party of Turkey (TDP) to imprisonment of up to 12 years and 4 months.
The same prison term given to three other defendants is decreased to 8
years and 4 months because they are younger than 18 years. The
Malatya SSC places under arrest ten university students for holding a
rally on the occasion of the anniversary of Halapja Massacre. The
Diyarbakir SSC places under arrest two alleged Hizbullah members.
19.3, IHD Adana office is raided and searched by
police. The Istanbul SSC sentences Cumali Karsu and Enver Özek to
capital punishment for a bomb attack resulted in the death of five
military cadets. Another defendant is sentenced to 12 years and 6
months in prison. The Izmir SSC sentences PKK members Fatma Tunc and
Nuri Akbulut to capital punishment and 21 other defendants to prison
terms of up to 18 years. The Malatya SSC sentences a DHKP/C member to
life-prison. The Constitutional Court decides to close down the
Rebirth Party (DP) for not having participated in two legislative
20.3, in Adana, HADEP official Sait Eren is
sentenced to a one-year imprisonment and a fine of TL 100 million for
using the word of Kurdistan in a speech he gave in 1993. In Istanbul,
17-year old O.K. claims to have been tortured during his police
detention on March 18.
21.3, at the village of Kocan in Erzurum, Nuri
Kaplan is shot dead by soldiers. HADEP local chairman Lezgin Biyan
and five other party members are tried by a penal court of Söke. In
Saray, unidentified gunmen attack the house of HADEP local chairman
Kadir Ayyildiz. In Sirvan, HADEP official Sükrü Öngülü is forced by
security forces to leave his village.
22.3, after a country-wide protest action by the
Confederation of Public Servants' Union (KESK), security forces detain
about 100 demonstrators in Bursa and three union officials in Ankara.
24.3, the village of Üzümlü in Eruh is bombed for
two hours by Turkish artillery during which 45-year old woman Halime
Turhan killed. In Mersin, 55-year old Besir Gaman, detained on
charges of theft, is killed under torture at police station.
25.3, in Corlu, five members of the Party of Labour
(EMEP) are taken into custody. The Ankara SSC sentences three members
of the Revolutionary Communists' Union of Turkey (TIKB) to prison terms
of up to 21 years and 8 months. A penal court of Ankara sentences 125
Aczmendi members to two months in prison and TL 300 thousand in fine
each for having insulted Atatürk during a demonstration on October 20,
1996, in Ankara.
26.3, in Suruc, IHD official Sevket Binici is taken
into custody together with 21 other people. In Mersin, EMEP local
chairman Abdurrahman Cakmak and other party officials are indicted for
having insulted the police during a poster campaign against price
hikes. In Istanbul, HADEP Güngören office is destroyed at a bomb
27.3, the Diyarbakir SSC places under arrest five
people detained during the Newroz celebrations in Diyarbakir. The
Izmir SSC places under arrest two alleged PKK militants.
28.3, the prosecutor of the Istanbul SSC opens a
trial against eleven alleged DHKP-C members on charges of having
participated in the attempt to the life of famous businessman Özdemir
Sabanci and her secretary Nilgün Hasefe on January 9, 1996. The
prosecutor demands capital punishment for four defendants as the
others, including one lawyer, face imprisonment of up to seven years
and six months. Two political prisoners, Yasin Islek and Turhan
Gecgel, claim to have been tortured after their failing attempt to
escape from the Iskenderun Prison.
29.3, after the protests actions by the KESK,
security forces detain about 200 public servants by using force in
Istanbul. Two similar actions in Malatya and Diyarbakir are banned by
authorities. In Istanbul, 20 EMEP members are taken into custody.
30.3, IHD warns the judicial authorities that two
prisoners in Ankara Prison, Mehmet Salih Celikpence and Resit Kayran,
and another prisoner in Siirt Prison, Selami Celik, face death because
of not being fairly treated. EMEP Mardin chairman Mahmut Kilinc is
detained after being beaten at his house in front of his wife and
children. In Samandag, twenty people including IHD and HADEP
officials are taken to police custody as they are paying a
commemorative visit to the grave of a victim of repression killed two
1.4, a penal court in Manisa places under arrest two
alleged DHKP-C members. In Istanbul, police detain EMEP local
chairman Kemal Cicek and four other people during a student protest
action. The Kayseri SSC sentences four PKK members to life-prison.
2.4, the Izmir SSC sentences two PKK militants to
capital punishment, another militant to life-prison and two others to
prison terms of up to 12 years and six months. IHD's attempt to place
a black wrath in front of the Interior Ministry in Ankara is prevented
by security forces. In Kilyos, Mustafa Sami is beaten by a military
patrol after a traffic accident. The Izmir SSC sentences 20 members
of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Turkey/Youth Communists' Union
(TSKP/GKB) to different prison terms of up to thirty years.
3.4, Demokrasi reports that political prisoner
Mehmet Sirin Önen, having escaped from Iskenderun Prison on March 7,
was killed under torture after his detention on March 14. The
Diyarbakir SSC Prosecutor starts a legal action against IHD officials
Mahmut Sakar and Cemil Aydogan for their speeches at a meeting on
charges of separatist propaganda. In Istanbul, parents of political
prisoners are attacked during a demonstration and seventeen of them
taken to custody. EMEP office in Sincan is closed down by district
4.4, in Igdir, security forces opening fire to a
group of Kurdish peasants shoot dead Halis Karatas and Ali Karatas.
In Kozluk, an unidentified person is found killed.
5.4, in Sason, four Kurdish peasants are detained
because of claiming that they were forced by security forces to walk in
a mined area in December 1996. Two persons are found burnt to dead on
the Bitlis-Batman highway. In Ankara, a propaganda bus of the EMEP is
attacked by Grey Wolves and two party members wounded.
7.4, five university students are detained in
Istanbul as protesting against Israeli Foreign Minister's visit to
Turkey. A penal court in Antalya starts to try three people for
having resisted to security forces during a meeting. HADEP Antep
official Ismail Polat is detained by police. In Bursa, 24 university
students are detained during a demonstration again State-Mafia
8.4, Demokrasi reports that prisoner Haluk Duran
became blind because he was not treated in time despite warnings of
other prisoners. Political prisoner Besir Gün claims to have been
tortured after the failed attempt of escape from Iskenderun Prison.
In Menemen, after a demonstration against State-Mafia relations, twenty
teachers and five other people are taken to police custody.
9.4, the Ankara SSC sentences six TDKP members to
prison terms of up to 12 years and six months. In Mardin HADEP
official Ramazan Kalkan and three other persons are taken to police
10.4, the Ankara SSC starts to try Sincan Mayor
Bekir Yildiz and ten other Islamists for the Jerusalem Evening held on
January 31 after which the military tanks made a demonstration of force
in the city's streets. Each faces a prison term of up to twelve years
on charges of attempting to set up a religious state in Turkey. At
the Gazi University of Ankara, Grey Wolves attack left-wing students
and wound three persons. Same day they wound six students at the
Hacettepe University. In Tokat, Yagmur Mayor (DYP) Hasan Utku is shot
dead by unidentified gunmen.
11.4, Mehmet Salih Celikpence, 46, condemned for PKK
activities, dies at hospital for a liver disease because he was not
fairly treated despite a number of warnings. IHD protest the attitude
of prison authorities and the President of the Republic who has not
intervened. A penal court in Sakarya sentences six trade union
officials to 15 months in prison and TL 575 thousand in fine for an
unauthorised demonstration. The Istanbul SSC sentences three TIKB
members to prison terms of up to 12 years and six months. The trial
of 13 DHKP-C members starts at the Istanbul SSC. The Diyarbakir SSC
continues to try 27 Hizbullah members.
12.4, in Mardin, Hikmet Duman and Veysel Bertan
claim to have been tortured after their detention on April 5 by
soldiers and village protectors. In Istanbul, Umraniye and Kartal
offices of the Press Workers' Trade Union (Basin-Is) are closed down by
13.4, in Kayseri, HADEP official Vedat Gürbüz
detained and subjected to torture at police station.
14.4, the Court of Cassation ratifies capital
punishment against DHKP-C militant Erol Özbolat and a ten-year
imprisonment for another militant. HADEP Ankara official Babür Pinar
is indicted for a statement asking to establish dialogue with the PKK.
15.4, a penal court in Ankara sentences 22
university students to 20 months in prison each for their protest
action against Gorbatchov's visit on April 28, 1995. EMEP Malatya
officials Tacettin Yasar, Cihat Kinik and Azmi Öztürk are detained by
police and forced to stop their party activities.
16.4, in Istanbul, police attack a demonstration in
protest against State-Mafia relations and detain more than 20
17.4, Emek reports that a woman named Zeki Iscan,
detained by police in Izmir on April 15, dies at police station.
18.4, in Adiyaman, teacher Enis Sahin is detained
and subjected to torture by security forces. In Izmir, lawyer Zeynep
Sedef Özdogan claims that political prisoners Selahattin Bagci,
Selahattin Güven and Faruk Güven were brutally beaten as they
were being transferred to another prison.
19.4, the Istanbul SSC prosecutor opens a trial
against five PKK members and demands capital punishment for four of the
accused. In Bursa, five workers are detained during a protest
20.4, a demonstration against State-Mafia relations
in Istanbul is prevented by security forces and six people detained.
HADEP official Kadir Dogan is placed under arrest by a penal court of
Osmaniye. In Diyarbakir, police raiding some houses detain HADEP
official Ziya Okcu and many other people. In Van, 10-year old Cevdet
Isik dies at the explosion of a grenade left by security forces. EMEP
official Bilal Bilgic is detained in Antalya.
23.4, in Istanbul, Tuncay Topyildiz is shot dead by
gendarmes on pretext that he disobeyed to the order to stop. In
Diyarbakir, Mehmet Akgül claims to have been tortured after his
detention at the beginning of April. In Mardin, a police armoured car
kills 12-year old Mehmet Serif Özcelik by running over during the
Children Day celebrations.
24.4, in Erzurum, two children, Muhammed Kulcur and
Gökhan Kulcur die at the explosion of a bomb left by soldiers. In
Istanbul, police shoot dead an unidentified person as trying to prevent
a protest action.
30.4, the Ankara SSC sentences 122 Aczmendi members
to prison terms of up to four years in prison and TL 100 million in
fine for having insulted Atatürk during a demonstration in Ankara on
October 20, 1996. HADEP Tunceli chairman Serafettin Halis is taken
into police custody. In Adana, Doctor Tufan Köse is sentenced by a
penal court to TL 18.7 million for having treated the victims of
torture at the Rehabilitation Centre of the Human Rights Foundation of
Turkey (TIHV) without having official authorisation.
1.5, the inmates of Ceyhan Prison announce that a
group of political prisoners were tortured when they were taken to
2.5, in Kiziltepe, a 70-year old woman named Emine
Can claims to have been tortured at police station after her detention
together with her sister and son.
4.5, an international conference on the question of
local press, organized by the Union of Architects and Engineers
Chambers of Turkey (TMMOB) and the Foundation of Communication (IPS) is
subjected to police interferences on charges of not having permission
of the participation of foreign speakers.
5.5, in Istanbul, Grey Wolves attack a group of EMEP
members and wounded two of them with cutting arms. In Istanbul,
17-year old Kadir Gül claims to have been forced by police to turn into
6.5, an Ankara Court starts to deal with a legal
action aimed at to close down the Human Rights Association of Turkey
(IHD). The Ankara prosecutor claims that an article in the IHD's
Statutes recognizing the right to refuse any demand of affiliation is
not compatible with the Associations Act. Same day, a conference
organized by the IHD on Capital Punishment and Right to Life is banned
by the governor. A similar conference held in Elazig is raided by
police. In Adana, Education Trade Union (Egitim Sen) local chairman
Gülabi Köseoglu is indicted for a press conference against the police's
anti-democratic practices. He faces a prison term of up to six years
for insulting police.
7.5, in Mersin, Aydin Gök claims to have been
tortured after his detention during May Day celebrations.
8.5, in Ankara, a 16-year high school student, I.C.
claims to have been kidnapped and beaten by plainclothesmen in a
deserted area. In Eregli, 19 people are tried by a penal court for
having participated in demonstrations in protest against State-Mafia
relations. A former HEP official, lawyer Hasan Dogan is placed under
arrest by the Malatya SSC for relations with PKK. In Pasinler, 4-year
old Fedai Ögürce dies at the explosion of a bomb left by security
forces and four other children gravely wounded.
9.5, in Ankara, the Association for Solidarity and
Friendship with Palestine is banned by the Interior Ministry.
10.5, in Ankara, Ismail Cengiz Mumcu claims to have
been tortured by police after his detention on May 6.
11.5, in Diyarbakir, security forces raiding a house
shoot dead two people.
12.5, the Istanbul SSC starts to try IHD Istanbul
chairwoman Nimet Tanrikulu and six other officials on pretext that a
video cassette confiscated during the police raid to the IHD office on
November 26, 1996, contains separatist propaganda. Each faces
imprisonment of up to ten years. The chairman of the Transport
Workers' Trade Union (Nakliyat-Is), Ali Riza Kücükosmanoglu is detained
in Bursa together with 12 workers on strike.
13.5, in Izmir, Hüseyin Uludag claims to have been
threatened by MIT agents for accepting to turn into a MIT informer.
In Istanbul, a group of Grey Wolves attack left-wing students at the
Mimar Sinan University and wound two students. In Istanbul, seven
people are taken into police custody on charges of contravening the law
which bans to wear religious dresses. The operation is carried out on
the directives of the National Security Council. Three teachers are
detained by security forces in Adana and Gaziantep.
14.5, in Istanbul, 23-year old Fethullah Kaya is
found dead at a police station after his arrest by police. In
Gaziantep, lawyer Burhan Veli Torun is shot dead by unidentified
gunmen. In Istanbul, 28 people are taken into police custody on
charges of contravening the law which bans to wear religious dresses.
15.4, in Istanbul, the number of those who were
taken into custody on charges of contravening the law which bans to
wear religious dresses rises to 81. In Izmir, HADEP officials Bedriye
Celil and Osman Bor are taken into custody. In Ankara, eight people
are detained for protesting against the pressure on construction
workers joining a trade union. In Nigde, 20 Aczmendi members in
prison are again indicted for insulting Atatürk. An EMEP meeting for
trade union rights in Izmir is banned by the governor.
16.5, at the village of Asmakaya in Bingöl, two
children named Hatice Turan and Mesut Demir are killed with the
explosion of a mine laid by security forces.
17.5, in Antalya, university student Hakan Günaslan
claims to have been tortured after his detention on May 15. In
Ankara, police disperse a group of students protesting against the
privatisation of health services and wound nine of them.
18.5, in Tunceli, an EMEP festival is banned by the
19.5, in Diyarbakir, three alleged Hizbullah members
are taken into police custody.
20.5, a new State Security Court is opened in Adana
to deal with the political "crimes" committed in the provinces of
Adana, Aksaray, Gaziantep, Hatay, Icel, Karaman, Kilis, Konya and
Nigde. At the same time, the SSC of Kayseri is closed and the cases
dealt by this court are transferred to the Ankara SSC.
21.5, in Kilis, 17-year old Yahya Polatli is killed
at the explosion of a mine laid by security forces.
22.5, security forces raiding a house in Istanbul
shoot dead PKK militant Selahattin Ückardes and detain two other
people. In Diyarbakir, IHD local chairman Mahmut Sakar, and Secretary
Sinan Tanrikulu are taken into police custody. Later, police teams
raiding IHD and Egitim-Sen offices in Diyarbakir confiscate many
publications and detain about ten people. At the Istanbul University,
Grey Wolves attack left-wing students and wound tens of them.
23.5, a criminal court of Izmir starts to try IHD
official Alp Ayan and three other human rights activists for having
insulted the State during the funeral of a victim of hunger strike in
prison in July 1996. Each faces imprisonment of up to six months.
Police attack university students holding a press conference about the
Grey Wolves attack one day ago: twenty students are wounded and 159
students taken into custody. The Istanbul SSC sentences five IBDA-C
members to 15-year imprisonment each for radical religious activities.
The Izmir SSC places under arrest 13 alleged DHKP-C and MLKP members.
24.5, IHD Diyarbakir Office is banned by the
governor on charges of leading activities against the State's security.
In Istanbul, a member of the Young Lawyers' Initiative (GAG), Ilknur
Yüksek is detained by police.
25.5, in Adana, an official of the United Transport
Workers' Trade Union (BTS), Ilker Önal claims to have been kidnapped
and tortured by police on May 24. In Hozat, a child named Engin
Singin is killed at the explosion of a mine laid by security forces.
26.5, an Istanbul prosecutor starts a legal action
against the Chairman of the Liberal Democrat Party (LDP), Besim Tibuk,
on charges of having insulted the Army at a TV programme. Tibuk faces
imprisonment of up to six years. An Ankara prosecutor indicts the
chairman of the Peace Party (BP), Ali Haydar Veziroglu on charges of
having insulted Premier Erbakan. Veziroglu faces imprisonment of up to
four years. The Istanbul SSC sentences two members of the Revolution
Party of Turkey (TDP) to twelve years and six months in prison. In
Silvan, Nimet Mecin is shot dead by unidentified assailants.
27.5, in Izmir, security forces raid the house of
IHD official Dervis Altun who was detained during a press conference
against Turkish military operation in Iraq. The Ankara SSC sentences
13 alleged DHKP-C members to imprisonment of up to 26 years. In
Suruc, unidentified gunmen shoot dead Ümit Sahin.
28.5, security forces arrest four PKK members in
29.5, a military tribunal in Eskisehir starts to try
Osman Murat Ülke, chairman of the Izmir Anti-War Association (ISKD) for
having refused to wear military uniform. He faces a prison term of up
to ten years. Grey Wolves attack left-wing students in Ankara and
Denizli and wound seven of them. In Istanbul, police detain six
people during a meeting in protest against the dismissing of 137 public
servants. In Ankara, the offices of the Vahdet Foundation for
Solidarity and Friendship in Education are raided by security forces
and five officials detained.
30.5, the Ankara SSC Prosecutor indicts IHD chairman
Akin Birdal together with four other human rights activists for their
speeches at the Human Rights Week in December 1996. Each faces prison
terms of up to three years.
30.5, an Istanbul prosecutor starts a legal
proceeding against 35 people for the incidents during the May Day
demonstration of this year in Istanbul.
31.5, EMEP Mersin chairman Abdurrahman Cakmak is
sentenced by a penal court to a fine of TL 528 thousand for not having
hoisted Turkish flag in front of the party building.
PRESSURE ON THE MEDIA IN APRIL-MAY 1997
3.3, the Chairman of the Workers' Party (IP) Dogu
Perincek and the director of the Belge Publishing House, Ayse Nur
Zarakolu are sentenced by the Ankara SSC to one year in prison and TL
100 million each for their speeches at the IHD Congress in 1994.
4.3, the director of the Akis Publishing House,
Ertürk Aksun is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to one-year imprisonment
and a fine of TL 850 million for having published Yalcin Kücük's book
entitled Marching. The Chief editor of the cultural review Evrensel,
Aydin Cubukcu is taken to custody by the political police. The Ankara
SSC starts to try three journalists of the periodical Kizil Bayrak,
Erol Malkoc, Gönül Sayginer and Bahri Colak on charges of being members
of the outlawed organization Ekim. In Gaziantep, a correspondent of
the journal Antep Kurtulus, Mehmet Balci is taken to police custody and
reportedly subjected to torture.
5.3, the public prosecutor of the Urfa province,
Ömer Kocarslan, is indicted for having written a book entitled The
Government's Honesty and is to be tried by a criminal court for having
insulted the government and the President of the Republic. Published
under an alias, Ferit Ergül, the book was already confiscated by the
6.3, the Ankara SSC sentences writer-poet Yilmaz
Odabasi to one year and six months in prison and a fine of TL 933
million for his book Dream and Life. The book's publisher Niyazi Kocak
too is sentenced to a fine of TL 67 million. After the announce of the
judgement, Odabasi shouts ad judges "I am ashamed to live with you in
the same country." On this gesture he is immediately placed under
arrest. Nu Roj writer Zeynel Abidin Kizilyaprak, detained by police
on February 27, is placed under arrest by the decision of the Istanbul
SSC. The Istanbul SSC confiscates Hidir Yesil's book Teaching on the
Construction of A Bolshevik Party. In Izmir, Kizil Bayrak
correspondents Ahmet Subasi and Bülent Taskin are taken into police
7.3, the Istanbul SSC places under arrest 11
journalists and trade union officials who were detained by police on
February 21. Among them are Özgür Atilim chief editor Bayram Namaz and
correspondents Sedat Senogul, Sultan Secik, Zabit Iltemur and Mukaddes
Celik. the chief editor of the defunct journal Newroz, Hüseyin Alatas
is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to one year, eleven months and ten
days in prison and a fine of TL 111 million.
8.3, security forces detain Kurtulus correspondent
Mehmet Kargilar and Tavir correspondent Ayfer Yildiz in Adana, and
Mücadele editor Cafer Cakmak in Istanbul. In Aydin, Demokrasi
correspondents Ferit Sever and Derya Bektas are detained as covering
the celebration of the World Women's Day. Mrs. Bektas is reportedly
subjected to sexual harassment at the central police station.
10.3, two musicians of the Group Yorum, Hakan Alak
and Ufuk Lüker, Tavir correspondent Aynur Cihan and Partizan Sesi
correspondent Haydar Sürgec are taken into police custody in Istanbul.
Kizil Bayrak Izmir office is raided by police. Özgür Gelecek, N°91,
and Odak, N°62, are confiscated by court decision.
11.3, movie actor Mahir Günsiray is tried by a penal
court of Istanbul for having insulted the Istanbul SSC by reading a
passage from Kafka's book The Trial during his interrogation at the
trial against of a group of intellectuals. He faces a prison term of up
to three years. Demokrasi correspondent Düzgün Akbaba is detained in
Erzincan. One of the ultra-nationalist Mafia fathers, Ali Yasak (Drej
Ali)attacked two journalists of the UBA news agency, Cengiz Aldemir and
Ahmet Ergen, in Ankara and seized a film which documented his secret
interview with MIT agent Korkut Eken in a hotel.
12.3, the Kizil Bayrak office in Zonguldak is raided
by police and correspondent Orhan Kavci taken into custody. The
Istanbul SSC confiscates the special March 12 issue of Kizil Bayrak.
In Malatya, Demokrasi correspondents Ali Kemal Sel, Ayse Oyman and Cem
Dogan, Özgür Halk correspondents Erdal Söylemez and Serpil Kilic are
taken to police custody for a press release issued on March 8 on the
occasion of the World Women's Day.
14.3, Mrs. Nadire Mater, Turkey representative of
the Reporters Sans Frontières, is taken into custody in Diyarbakir
together with two Finnish journalists. Kizil Bayrak Zonguldak
correspondent Orhan Kavci is placed under arrest by a penal court.
Kurtulus Kocaeli correspondent Sincan Demir and two other
correspondents of the same periodical, Gülay Yücel and Nihat Özcan, are
placed under arrest by penal court decisions.
15.3, in Istanbul, Proleter Halkin Birligi
correspondent Hatun Temizalp claims to have been tortured after her
detention on March 7. Devrimci Genclik office in Istanbul is raided
by police and 32 people taken into custody. Kizil Bayrak editor Gonca
Dönmezer is detained in Istanbul. Sterka Rizgari, N°14, is
confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
17.3, lawyer and writer Ahmet Zeki Okcuoglu is tried
by the Istanbul SSC for having translated a book entitled Kurdistan and
Kurds, written by Vlademir Minorsky, Thomas Boysand D.N. MacKenzy.
The Istanbul Chief Prosecutor Erdal Gökcen bans the presence of TV
cameramen in the court room during the trial of political offences.
According to an earlier decision, only the journalists carrying an
official card delivered by the government are authorized to cover the
18.3, the Prosecutor of the Diyarbakir SSC bans the
presence of all journalists at the court room during political trials.
In Istanbul, Devrimci Genclik office is again raided by police and
two employees, Bünyamin Bicer and Nilüfer Altinkaya taken into custody.
The Istanbul SSC confiscates Hedef N°65 and Özgür Atilim N°50.
Former Adana correspondent of the periodical Alinteri, Hatice Gül is
placed under arrest by court decision. A penal court of Istanbul
sentences satirical magazine Leman to a total of TL 12.6 billion for a
cartoon by Galip Tekin.
20.3, the editor of the defunct Özgür Ülke, Veysi
Harman is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to 2 years and 4 months in
prison and a fine of TL 770 million, writer Ali Riza Yurtsever to
16-month imprisonment and a fine of TL 133 million and publisher Hasan
Kücükoba to TL 704 million. The Istanbul SSC bans the Turkish
translation of a doctorate thesis by Toronto University lecturer Emir
Hasanpur and entitled State Policies Concerning Kurdish Language and
Rights to Language. In Istanbul, Demokrasi distributor Hüseyin Yilmaz
21.3, in Ankara, Özgür Halk correspondent Tanju
Kuruözü is detained during the non-official Newroz celebrations and
subjected to torture at police station. Milliyet editor Mehmet Murat
Sabuncu and correspondent Eren Güvener are tried by the Istanbul SSC
for a reportage with Aczmendi leader Müslüm Gündüz. Two journalists and
Gündüz face imprisonment of up to six years each.
22.3, in Kayseri, Atilim correspondent Ali Nihat
Eroglu and IHD official Salahattin Ünsal are detained together with 21
24.3, The Istanbul SSC starts to try the publisher
of the daily Radikal, Aydin Dogan, and the former responsible editor
Yesim Denizel Bedük for a declaration of PKK leader Öcalan. Each faces
a fine of not less than TL 50 million.
25.3, a prosecutor of the Istanbul SSC, Mete Göktürk
is indicted by the Chief Public Prosecutor on the order of Justice
Minister for his declaration to the daily Yeni Yüzyil concerning the
autonomy of justice. Accused of insulting the Justice, Göktürk faces a
prison term of up to twelve years.
26.3, the Court of Cassation ratifies a total of 4
years and 4 months in prison and TL 333 million in fine against
sociologist Besikci for separatist propaganda in his 15 different books.
27.3, Özgür Halk responsible editor Cavidan
Dogan is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to 1 year and 4 months in
prison and TL 133 million in fine for an article she published. The
court also decides to close down the review for one month. The
Istanbul Prosecutor confiscates Gerald Messadi's book My life of love
and crime with Martin Heidegger on charges of obscene publication. In
Istanbul, The Upper Mesopotamia Cultural Centre (MKM) is raided by
police and 27 members taken into custody.
29.3, the Court of Cassation ratifies a six-month
imprisonment against a journalist of the Adana newspaper Bölge, Erhan
Ünal, for having insulted a State functionary.
30.3, a cultural day organised by HADEP in Antep is
banned by authorities. Kizil Bayrak correspondent Ahmet Subasi,
detained on March 6 in Izmir, claims to have been tortured at police
1.4, the military court of General Staff continues
to try 12 members of the IHD and the Izmir Anti-War Association (ISKD)
for having published a book entitled The Human Rights Panorama in
Turkey. Each faces prison terms of up to two years. The last issues
of Direnis and Özgürlüge Yürüyüs are confiscated by the Istanbul SSC
for separatist propaganda. In Urfa, Cumhuriyet correspondent Özcan
Günes is taken into custody. Kurtulus correspondent Hatice Köngec is
detained in Adana. The newspaper Hatay's correspondent Hülya Döver is
attacked and beaten by unidentified assailants in Iskenderun.
2.4, the members of the theatre group Cansenligi
Players are indicted by the military prosecutor for having incited the
people against military service in a play. They will be tried by the
military court of General Staff under Article 155 of the TPC. RTÜK
bans the broadcasting of Kanal D TV for three days. The two different
trials against 86 and 98 intellectuals for having assumed the
responsibility of the book entitled Freedom to Thought are incorporated
by the Istanbul SSC. The Istanbul SSC sentences two programme makers
of the private Radio Cevre, Seyit Soydan and Nese Tükenmez, to one year
and eight months in prison and TL 500 thousand in fine each for a
programme about the assassination of 11 peasants by security forces in
Güclükonak on January 15, 1996. The chairman of the Kurdish Institute
in Istanbul, Sefik Beyaz is sentenced TO TL 84 million for his speech
at a meeting "Nationalism and Racism in Europe", organized by the EP
Greens' Group in Istanbul in May 1994. In Istanbul, a boy
distributing Emek is attacked and beaten by Grey Wolves.
3.4, in Istanbul, the car of the Show TV journalist
Kadir Celik is attacked by unidentified gunmen in front of his house.
4.4, Kurtulus correspondent Cenk Aksan is detained
in Sivas together with three other people.
5.4, RTÜK bans the broadcasting of Show TV for one
6.4, the military prosecutor opens three different
legal actions against Osman Murat Ülke, chairman of the Izmir Anti-War
Association (ISKD) for his declarations against military service. To be
tried again by the military court of General Staff, Ülke faces a total
of 14-year imprisonment. Local Chairman of the Mesopotamia Cultural
Centre (MKM) Servet Özkan is taken into custody.
7.4, Kurtulus N°24 is confiscated by the Istanbul
SSC for separatist propaganda. In Adana, Kurtulus correspondent
Mehmet Kargilar is detained by police.
8.4, April issue of the review Uzun Yürüyüs is
confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for the propaganda of an outlawed
9.4, the Diyarbakir SSC sentences Özgür Gündem
representative Salih Tekin, correspondent Cemal Dag and distributor
Ihsan Erdem to three years and nine months in prison each. A penal
court in Ankara sentences the responsible editor of the satirical
magazine Leman, Kutlu Esendemir, to 3 months and 15 days in prison and
TL 2.3 million in fine for having insulted Premier Erbakan in a
cartoon. Selam correspondent Burhan Kavuncu and Haksöz correspondent
Ridvan Kaya are taken into police custody after an anti-Israel protest
10.4, Istanbul prosecutor opens two trials against
Islamist Akit columnist Abdurrahman Dilipak with the demand of 12-year
imprisonment. Indicted together with Sincan Mayor, the chief editor
of the Islamist journal Selam, Nurettin Sirin faces a prison term of up
to 31 years on charges of attempting to set up a religious state.
Kurtulus office in Ankara is raided by police; Kurtulus correspondents
Volkan Aydin and Halil Aksu detained together with Kizil Bayrak
correspondents Enis Colak and Gönül Sayginer as well as eight other
11.4, in Istanbul, Hedef office is destroyed at a
13.4, IHD campaign for freedom of opinion and Ismail
Besikci is banned by the governor of Mus.
14.4, Kurtulus N°25 is confiscated by the Istanbul
SSC for separatist propaganda and praising an outlawed organization.
16.4, Demokrasi correspondent Zülfikar Ali Aydin is
harassed by police in Istanbul as covering a student demonstration and
subjected to torture during his police detention. Kurtulus
correspondent Murat Kuyumcu is detained in Istanbul. Atilim
Iskenderun representative Altan Koman is detained by police raiding his
17.4, Kurtulus distributor Mehmet Öztürk is detained
19.4, a demand by the Kurdish Foundation for Culture
and Researches (Kürt-Kav) to organize Kurdish courses is refused by the
National Education Direction. Kurtulus correspondents Sinan Gürz and
Baris Karatepe are detained in Malatya.
20.4, Kurtulus correspondents Banu Gündogdu, Mehmet
Yildiz, Ibrahim Caglar and Nilüfer Günes and Devrimci Genclik
correspondent Bülent Özpolat are detained in Istanbul.
21.4, Devrimci Genclik editor Cem Duman and
correspondent Yalcin Hafci, Atilim distributors Özgül Itmec and Gülay
Coban are detained in Istanbul.
22.4, in Istanbul, Kurtulus correspondent Ali Ihsan
Kilic is detained after being wounded by police fire.
23.4, Tuzla office of the journal Dayanisma is
raided by gendarmes, journalist Mahsuni Yilmaz, Zafer Dolu and Nail
24.4, Partizan Sesi N°8 and its special issue N°3
are confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda. Three
members of the Izmir Fetih Theatre, Mehmet Vahi Yazar, Memet Elmas and
Ahmet Cakir are detained in Izmir for insulting Atatürk in a play they
presented. The Ankara SSC Prosecutor orders the arrest of other members
of the theatre as well.
25.4, a group of journalists attempting to interview
some religious persons is attacked by Islam fundamentalists and a
cameraman of HBB TV gravely beaten. Istanbul SSC sentences Özgür Halk
editor Ismail Cim to 6-month prison and a fine of TL 50 million
and columnist Mehmet Can Yüce to 2-year prison and a fine of TL 400
million. The court also decides to ban the journal's publication for
one month. In Adana, the editor of a local journal, Güney Uyanis,
Hamdi Batman is detained by police. Fifteen people are detained in
Amasya, Izmir, Eskisehir and Balikesir in relations with the case of
Izmir Fetih Theatre.
26.4, Demokrasi chief correspondent Temel Demirer is
detained by police raiding his house in Ankara. In Adana, Kurtulus
and Tavir offices are raided by police. During the raids, a member of
the musical group Nisan Günesi, Selcuk Eroglu is detained together with
some other people.
27.4, the Istanbul SSC confiscates the last issues
of Devrimci Emek, Direnis, Alinteri, Kurtulus and Hedef for separatist
propaganda and praising outlawed organizations.
28.4, the Show TV and Radio D broadcastings are
banned for one day by the RTÜK. Ayse Kavci, the wife of Kizil Bayrak
correspondent Orhan Kavci, claims to have been forced to be a police
informer after her husband's detention on March 11. Belge Publishing
House Director Ayse Nur Zarakolu is sentenced again by the Istanbul SSC
to six months in prison for having published Yves Ternon's book on
Armenian Genocide entitled The Armenian Taboo. The prison term is later
commuted into a fine of TL 101 million. For the same book Zarakolu had
been sentenced to two years but the Court of Cassation asked the SSC to
review the sentence. Poet-writer Yilmaz Odabasi is tried by a penal
court of Ankara for insulting Atatürk in his book Dream and Life. For
the same book Odabasi had already been sentenced to one year and six
months in prison and a fine of TL 933 million on charges of separatist
propaganda. In the new trial, the prosecutor demands a prison term of
up to 7 years and 6 months.
29.4, the Kanal D broadcastings are banned for one
day by the RTÜK. Partizan Sesi office in Adana is raided by police
and a number of posters on May Day confiscated.
30.4, the Istanbul SSC sentences the editor of
Sterka Rizgari, Mete Demirkol to six months in prison and TL 75 million
in fine and the publisher Riza Dinc to a fine of TL 150 million for
separatist propaganda. The court also decides to ban the review's
publication for one month. In Tuzla, Dayanisma correspondent Mahsuni
Yilmaz claims to have been tortured for four days after his detention
on April 23.
2.5, the publication of the weekly Aydinlik is
banned for one month according to a decision of the Istanbul SSC
ratified by the Court of Cassation. The higher court also
ratifies a fine of TL 105 million against the editor of Aydinlik,
4.5, in Ankara, 25 members of the Socialist Power
Party (SIP) are detained as selling their review entitled Sosyalist
5.5, a poster campaign by the EMEP for commemorating
the revolutionary youth leaders of 60s, Deniz Gezmis, Yusuf Arslan and
Hüseyin Inan, is forbidden by the Ankara Governor.
6.5, special May Day issue of Proleter Halkin
Birligi is confiscated y the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
Atilim Iskenderun correspondent Mikail Vayic is tried by the Malatya
SSC on charges of being member of an outlawed organization.
7.5, the governor of Yozgat bans the Birikim Theatre
to stage its two plays on pretext of ridiculing a general.
9.5, Hasim Kutlu's book To Discuss the Alevi
Identity, published by the Belge Yayinlari, is banned by the Istanbul
SSC on charges of inciting the Alevis to hostility. The
representation of the play Stories from the Country by the Ekin Theatre
is banned by the governors of Diyarbakir, Batman and Adiyaman.
10.5, a concert of the Group Kizilirmak, organized
in Sivas by the Freedom and Solidarity Party (ÖDP) is forbidden by the
12.5, the head office of the daily Hürriyet in
Istanbul is attacked by an armed Islamic fanatic following Ciller's
provocative declaration against the media.
13.5, in Batman, the broadcasting of the local TV
Kanal 72 is banned by the Mayor's order for a programme on the water
question of the city. Odak N°64 is confiscated by the Istanbul SSC
for separatist propaganda.
14.5, in Gaziantep, the General Coordinator of the
journal Metropol, Burhan Veli Torun, is shot dead by unidentified
gunmen. He had accused at a TV programme the security chiefs of
kidnapping the owner of the Yaprak TV on April 25, 1996.
15.5, the Adana offices of Kurtulus and Tavir are
raided by police and some people inside taken into custody.
17.5, the Istanbul SSC Prosecutor starts a legal
action against Emin Karaca, Secretary General of the Writers' Union of
Turkey (TYS) and publisher Muzaffer Erdogdu for having translated and
published German writer Leo Müller's book entitled Gladio Kontrgerilla.
20.5, the head offices of the daily Sabah and the
television ATV are attacked by three unidentified gunmen. In
Gaziantep, the owner of the Yaprak TV, Mehmet Ali Yaprak is taken into
custody in relation with the assassination of Burhan Veli Torun on May
14. The responsible editor of the periodical Hedef, Celal Dönmez is
taken into police custody in Istanbul.
21.5, the Sisli prosecutor in Istanbul orders the
confiscation of all published issues of the weekly Devrimci Aydinlik on
pretext that it is a continuation of the weekly Aydinlik which has
recently been closed by a court decision. In Edirne, the governor
bans the EMEP posters against price hikes, unemployment, fascist
attacks and Counter-guerrilla.
22.5, the Ankara SSC sentences the director of the
Yurt Yayinlari, Ünsal Öztürk, to a fine of TL 220.6 million for having
published fifteen books of Ismail Besikci. He is accused of separatist
propaganda. During the Grey Wolves attack at the Istanbul University,
Kanal E cameraman Deniz Dursun, Demokrasi correspondent Cengiz Cinar
and Radikal correspondent Sebnem Aksoy are wounded by assailants and
23.5, the editor of the defunct Islamist review
Taraf, Kazim Albayrak is sentenced by the Izmir SSC to fifteen years in
prison for taking part in IBDA-C activities. Periodical Nu Roj is
banned for an indefinite period on charge of not giving a declaration
in time about the change of its address.
28.5, Bulent Balta, a 27-year-old chemistry
graduate, is jailed to serve a two and a half year prison term under
the Anti-Terror Law for articles published in late 1993 in the now
banned newspaper, Özgür Gündem. Balta served as editor of Özgür Gündem
for only twelve days before he was arrested in November 1993.
30.5, the Ankara SSC Prosecutor indicts Cumhuriyet
columnist Mustafa Ekmekci, who died one week ago, together with four
other human rights activists for his speech at the Human Rights Week in
December 1996. The Chief Prosecutor of the Court of Cassation asked
the Ankara Prosecutor to starts legal proceedings against eight
journalists from Milli Gazete, Akit and Yeni Safak for having
criticised the lawsuit opened by himself with the demand of closing
down the RP.
31.5, the Ankara SSC bans two posters issued by the
Education Workers' Trade Union (Egitim Sen) for separatist propaganda.
PRICE OF ANGERING THE PASHA: 780 YEARS IN JAIL
Hürriyet reports on May 27: "Prison sentences
totalling 760 years demanded for the persons involved in the theatrical
play which angered the Pasha."
The investigation into a controversial Islamist play
in which people were allegedly incited to rebel against the army has
been completed. Prosecutor of the Ankara SSC has demanded record prison
sentences of a total 780 years for the 39 defendants including
executives of the pro-RP National Youth Foundation who organized the
The play had triggered an angry outburst from
General Osman Özbek, the gendarmerie commander for the Erzurum region.