A non-government information service on Turkey
Un service d'information non-gouvernemental sur la Turquie


11th Year - N°131
September 1987
38 rue des Eburons - 1000 Bruxelles
Tél: (32-2) 215 35 76 - Fax: (32-2) 215 58 60
 Rédacteur en chef: Dogan Özgüden - Editrice responsable: Inci Tugsavul

Former political leaders come again on the scene.
Though Özal tried to trap them with an electoral fait accompli,

the Constitutional Court frustrated him in his plans


        Political bans imposed in 1982 on 242 former political leaders have been lifted after the Turkish electorate voted, on September 6, 1987, by a narrow margin in favour of their return to public life, but Turkey, on the call by Prime Minister Ozal, has immediately entered in the effervescence of a new voting, this time that of an early election to be held on November 1st, 1987.
        However, after the announcement of the candidates, the Constitution Court frustrated Ozal in his fait accompli by annuling the procedure of niminating candidates. So, Turkey has entered in one of the gravest crises of her history.
        Since this referendum was considered as a kind of test for the popularity of the former political leaders, the narrow vote has become a serious blow on their aspirations. The electors, by lifting political bans with a narrow margin, have made it clear that they, although against the interdictions, have not yet forgotten the mismanagement of the former prime ministers, Demirel and Ecevit, who sought a larger backing in this referendum.
        The results have not been satisfactory for Ozal either. Last May the Turkish National Assembly had voted, by a huge majority, to lift the bans. But the Prime Minister dreamt up the idea of a referendum in the hope that the nation would reverse the parliamentary decision and consign his rivals to permanent oblivion. So, the referendum has degenerated into a bitter contest between two men: Prime Minister, Turgut Ozal, and his arch-rival, former Prime Minister Süley-man Demirel.
        The referendum campaign was mainly marked by opposition attacks on Mr. Ozal's economic liberalisation programme which has recently forced up inflation to a monthly rate of % 5.4. However, the population has not yet forgotten the fact that the inflation during the governments of Demirel and Ecevit was worse than today. In fact, according to the daily Hürriyet of September 12, 1987, the monthly inflation rate was of  6.4 per cent during the 22-month power of Ecevit and 8.5 per cent during the 10-month period of Demirel. For this reason, the attacks of the two former prime ministers were easily refuted by Ozal.
        But the Prime Minister's strongest card was the undoubted mismanagement of the country by both Demirel and Ecevit during the 1970s, when Turkey came close to civil war.
         Consequently, 49,84 per cent of the 23.3 million electorate who took part in the referendum said "no" to a lifting of the bans, while only 50.16 per cent were favouring it, with a difference of just 75,066 votes.
        It is noteworthy that 1,658,809 electors did not go the polls despite the risk of a fine of $ 20 and 1,088,965 ballot papers were registered invalid.
        What is more significant, though the favourable votes have a slim majority, the number of the provinces who voted against the former leaders is considerably high: While 27 provinces were voting in favour of the former leaders, 40 provinces including the most important ones such as Istanbul and Ankara said "no".
        Considering these results, the coming legislative election will no doubt be a decisive test for the credibility of the former political leaders.
        A narrow vote for lifting the bans had already been predicted by public opinion polls during the campaign. But the same polls had also indicated that Ozal's party would win an election if it were held immediately.
        Considering these predictions, Ozal, just before the opening of ballot boxes, announced at a news conference in Ankara that he intended to submit to Parliament draft legislation that would enable him to hold elections within two months instead of having to give three months' notice as required by the present electoral law.
        Since his ruling Motherland Party (ANAP) has a parliamentary majority, he has not faced any difficulty in making the changes. The Parliament has decided a few days later to hold the early elections on November 1st, 1987 and made in this effect some considerable changes in the Electoral Law.
        According to political commentators, Ozal has decided to hold legislative e-lections just after the referendum for the following reasons:
        - If the elections were held in 1988 as stipulated by the Constitution, the former political leaders would have the time to get back their old electors who vote since 1983 for the ANAP.
        - Since the last partial elections the ANAP has regained some prestige thanks to the amelioration of the relations with European governments and especially to the introduction of the demand of full membership to the European Communities.
        - However, the economic previsions for the coming months are not optimistic. The IMF has recently suggested to Ozal some drastical economic measures such as increasing the prices of many consumer goods, reducing investments and lowering the economic growth rate. Putting in practice these measures before the legislative elections would be another negative effect on his party's electoral chance.
        The electoral maneuvers of Turgut Ozal had already been revealed in Bulletin Info-Türk of June 1987.
        Just after the decision for holding early elections, denouncing Ozal's electoral maneuvers, the principal opposition party, SHP, appealed to the Constitutional Court for the annulment of the modifications of the Electoral Law for the following reasons:
        - While the Constitution stipulates a 3-month interval between the date of decision on general elections and the date of holding these elections, this provision has not been respected.
        - The nomination of the party candidates by the party leadership, instead of a democratic election by the party members, is not compatible with the Constitution.
        - The electoral propaganda period is limited to ten days while it was 21 days beforehand. Since the government party is always using State radio and television its own propaganda without any limitation, this restriction is aimed at diminishing the electoral chance of the opposition parties.
        - At least 1.8 million electors cannot vote due to the impossibility of actualizing the electorate lists until November 1st.
          - The barrages for election have been raised in such a manner that some political parties will not be represented in the new National Assembly even if they obtain rather high percentage of votes. For having their candidates elected, political parties have to obtain at least 10 percent of the votes throughout Turkey and 20 percent in the constituencies where more than six deputies will be elected.
        - The names of candidates are not put on the voting bulletins and the electors are forced to vote only for political parties without knowing whom they elect.
        On this appeal, the Constitutional Court, on October 9, judged the procedure of nominating candidates unconstitutional, imperiling so the holding of the early elections on November 1st.
        Nevertheless, the four former political leaders, without waiting for the Constitutional Court's decision, have managed to place themselves at the head of the political parties founded by their former supporters and to put themselves and their companions at the top of the party tickets.
        Bülent Ecevit, chairman of the defunct Republican People's Party (CHP), leads now the Democratic Left Party (DSP);
        Süleyman Demirel, chairman of the defunct Justice Party (AP), leads the Correct Way Party (DYP);
        Alparslan Türkes, chairman of the defunct Nationalist Action Party (MHP), leads the Nationalist Labour Party (MCP);
        N. Erbakan, chairman of the defunct National Salvation Party (MSP), leads the Welfare Party (RP).
        All of them are also running for the National Assembly at the top of their party tickets.
        However, different to the pre-coup period marked by the quarrel among themselves, this time the electoral race will be held among seven political parties of which three are led by brand-new politicians: The Motherland Party (ANAP) of Ozal, the Social Democrat Populist Party (SHP) of Inönü and a new islamist organization: the Reformist Democracy Party (IDP).
        The political parties of the working class and the Kurdish people are once more are excluded from participating in legal political life and legislative elections. Although 242 former politicians, thanks to the referendum, have regained their political rights, 82 out of them who were the leaders of the Socialist Workers' Party of Turkey (TSIP), the Workers' Party of Turkey (TIP) and the Workers'-Peasants' Party of Turkey (TIKP), are still deprived of the right to participate in political life because of their condemnation to heavy prison terms. There are also other marxist or Kurdish parties which had already been outlawed before the coup d'état and they remain still so. What is most deplorable, none of the four former political leaders say anything on the right of the socialist and Kurdish party leaders who cannot benefit from the results of the re
        While three right-wing leaders, Demirel, Türkes and Erbakan, are forcing themselves to get back their former electorate who voted in the 1983 legislative e-lections for Ozal's ANAP, former social-democrat leader Bülent Ecevit uses the remnants of the charisma that he had in the period of 1973-78 in order to divide the social-democrat votes of the SHP and to draw a part of them to the DSP that he leads.
        Although just after the referendum the SHP proposed to Ecevit to seek a formula for uniting the forces of the two social-democrat parties and for struggling against five right-wing parties as a sole left-wing alternative, Ecevit shocked even his admirers by refusing any kind of electoral cooperation with the SHP. With a view to destroying electoral chance of the SHP, Ecevit has not hesitated to say that this party had been infiltrated by ultra-left militants. For this reason, almost all of the former leading members of the defunct CHP, led once by Ecevit, have refused to support his new party, DSP, and joined the brand-new SHP.
        Whatsoever will be the fate of the coming elections, one should not hope too much for returning a real democratic life in Turkey due to Ozal's electoral fait accompli which crumbled into an electoral farce on the one hand, and Ecevit's attitude dividing left-wing votes on the other.


        While torture was becoming an issue for public dis
cussion in the Turkish opinion, Amnesty International has published in September 1987 a new document on this inhuman practice in Turkey. We are reproducing below some parts of the AI findings:         
        "Almost four years after a civilian government came to power in November 1983, no effective measures have been taken to prevent torture. The Turkish authorities admitted that torture takes place, but have repeatedly claimed that it is used only in isolated incidents. Despite the promise that all complaints of torture are investigated and that those responsible for torture will be prosecuted, AI has not observed any fundamental changes in the systematic and widespread practice of torture.
        "Although people have been tortured in police stations and prisons of every type throughout Turkey, there are also buildings specially equipped for torture.
        "Most of these places are well known. The US-based human rights group, Helsinki Watch Committee, stated in March 1986: 'I was able to find to exact location of the main torture centers in both cities. (Ankara and Istanbul). A government determined to eliminate torture would investigate the treatment of detainees in these centres and take the necessary steps.'
        "One of the best known torture centres is a place called DAL (Devlet Arastirma Laboratuvari) in Ankara Police Headquarters. The detainees -students held between November 1986 and March 1987- indicate clearly a room where torture equipment is housed and used. A former prisoner of conscience tortured there in 1981 has confirmed the accuracy of the sketch. The passage between Sections A and B is reported to be very low so people have to bend down to walk through. It can be closed off by an artificial wall camouflaged with fire extinguishers to avoid unwanted entry. Except for the addition of a "recreation room" used to treat injuries be
fore the prisoner's release or formal arrest by a court, nothing seems to have changed since then.
        "Another dimension of the problem of torture and ill-treatment in Turkey is illustrated by the situation in the southeast. Armed clashes between Kurdish guerrilla troops and the Turkish security forces have led to more than 700 deaths in less than three years since August 1984.
        "AI received oral and written testimonies of whole villages being rounded up by the security forces and the Kurdish population being beaten by members of the gendarmerie or army searching for guerrillas and their supporters. Four people are alleged to have died as a result of torture between February and June 1987."


        4.8: In Istanbul, 14 out of the 19 people detained during the protest actions, are arrested by the State Security Court. The Mutual Aid Association of the Parents of Detainees and Prisoners (TAYAD) announces that the police had committed crime by beating and dragging in its members during their arrest.    
        6.8, The Secretary General of the Human Rights Association (IHD), Mr. Akin Birdal, accuses Justice Minister Mahmut Oltan Sungurlu of being principal responsible of the inhuman treatments in prisons. The latter, taking no heed of complaints, says: "We cannot hand over the administration of prisons to the prisoners' families. Even if we accept to put in practice all their demands, I am sure that they will not put an end to their actions."
        12.8, a group of parents restart their hunger-strike by a demonstration in the Güven Park in Ankara for protesting against the Justice Minister's intransigent attitude.
        14.8, Justice Minister Sungurlu, confirming that 233 prisoners were carrying on hunger-strike in five prisons, announces that journalists will be allowed to visit all prisons and calls on the strikers to put an end to their actions.
        1.9, Hundreds of parents of prisoner coming from different regions of the country gather together in Ankara and organize a protest march towards the Grand National Assembly. The demonstrators, including women and children, are brutally halted and beaten up by police. During the dispute between two sides, a 50-year old woman, Didar Sensoy, sister of a prisoner condemned to death, dies of a heart-attack. Police harass also 19 journalists following the demonstration and destroy their cameras. 60 demonstrators are taken into custody, but released after a 7-hour detention.
        2.9, a group of parents of prisoner as well as some distinguished writers and artists meet in front of the Metris Military Prison in Istanbul and offer their sympathy to Didar Sensoy's brother, Hasan Sensoy, condemned to death.
        5.9, Didar Sensoy is buried in Istanbul with a funeral procession attended by more than five thousand people who, raising their fists, shout the following slogans: "Down with Fascism", "Human dignity overcomes torture", "Release prisoners", "Empty all prisons", "General amnesty".


        Under the pressure of the public opinion, the Justice Ministry and the Army's General Staff had to open the civilian and military prisons to the press. From August 18 to September 1, 1987, Turkish journalists had the possibility of entering in eight prisons and of interviewing political prisoners.
        The findings of the journalists appeared day by day in newspapers are, in one word, frightful and shameful.
        The daily Cumhuriyet of September 9, 1987, resumed the findings of its reporters as follows:
        MEALS: The food given to prisoners are very far from being nutritive. Meals prepared with butter of the worst quality were disgusting.The Justice Ministry attributes only 375 Turkish Liras (O.35 Dollar) for the daily consumption of a prisoner while it should be 1,000 TL at the least.
        CLEANING: Prisoners are allowed to have shower only once in fifteen days. In many prisons inmates can use only cold water even in winter time. They have to wash their dishes and linens too with cold water. In the prisons of south-eastern Turkey, inmates do not have the possibility of getting shower even with cold water. For this reason, they are very often subjected to epidemic diseases.
        AIRING: It is a real luxury in prisons. They are not allowed to recreation in the prison yard. Deprived of the possibility of walking, many prisoners are suffering from inertia.
        VISITS: All prisoners are complaining of the restriction of their families' visits. Even during these limited visits, they cannot easily communicate with their parents due to the fact that the separation between the prisoner and his visitor make impossible to hear each other.
        READING: Prisoners are deprived of the right to read even the books or periodicals which have never been the subject of any interdiction. While certain publications are allowed by some prisons, they are arbitrarily banned by the others.
        TORTURE AND BEATING: All political detainees have declared that they had been subjected to systematic torture in prisons between 1980 and 1984. Though many prisoners have died or been handicapped due to torture, these acts have been hushed up by the authorities. Since 1984 political prisoners very often undergo psychological torture and harassment.
        REGULATIONS: They were decreed by the military after the coup d'état and still stay in power. Each prison administration interprets them differently. For example, listening to radio is still banned in some prisons while it is free in some others.
        PRISON UNIFORM: The prison regulations oblige all detainees, condemned or simply indicted, to wear one-type prison uniform. Those who are not yet condemned refuse to wear this uniform claiming that they should be considered innocent until the end of their trial. Protesting against this practice, many political detainees refused to go to trials.
        HANDCUFFS AND CHAINS: Especially the detainees in Istanbul prisons complain of being taken to tribunal or hospital as being handcuffed and chained.
        BAN ON LETTERS: Corresponding by letter between the inmates of different prisons are strictly banned. As for the correspondence with parents, it is also subjected to restrictions.
        DISCIPLINARY PUNISHMENT: In the case of resisting against the above mentioned arbitrary practices, prisoner is subjected to disciplinary punishment. Mainly, he cannot benefit from the anticipated release. Prison guardians provoke incidents with the purpose of exposing the prisoner to disciplinary punishment.
        SOLITARY CONFINEMENT: In all prisons, those who are considered "incorrigible" by the direction are kept for months in solitary confinement. The cells are generally under the surface of the ground and filthy. Prisoner is subjected to a total isolation and his health is getting worse and worse in unbearable conditions.
        All the press reports confirm the claims of prisoners which were  published earlier in Brussels: Two dreadful documents on Military Jails in Turkey , Solidarity Publications, June 1987.


        All the new repressive measures taken against the Kurdish armed resistance such as the nomination of a super-governor for applying the state of emergency proclaimed in eleven Eastern provinces, the formation of a "extraordinary" army corps and the augmentation of the effective forces of the police and the Gendarmerie have turned out to be ineffective in this region.
        The ARGK guerilla units, led by the Workers' Party of Kurdistan (PKK), carry on to give serious blows to the Army detachments as well as to the villages supporting  the government forces.
        According to the daily Tercüman of September 24, 1987, since the beginning of this year, Kurdish guerillas have killed 165 people in total during their raids on pro-governmental villages:
        January 21, in Uludere: 8 dead and 8 wounded,
        January 23, in Midyat, 10 dead and 5 wounded,
        February 22, in Uludere, 14 dead and 9 wounded,
        March 14, in Sirnak (Siirt), 8 dead,
        April 28, in Semdinli (Hakkari), 13 dead,
        June 5, in Hozat (Tunceli), 4 dead and 8 wounded,
        June 21, in Pinarcik, 30 dead and 3 wounded,
        July 9, in Hakkari, 29 dead,
        August 19, in Eruh (Siirt), 25 dead,
        August 21, in Dargecit (Mardin), 5 dead,
        August 30, in Sirnak (Siirt), 4 dead and 4 wounded,
        September 3, in Omerli (Mardin), 8 dead,
        September 22, in Sirnak (Siirt), 11 dead.


        A French national, Mr. Michel Caraminot who had been arrested in Sanliurfa for carrying some touristic material showing some parts of Turkey as Armenia and Kurdistan, was brought, on August 26, 1987, before the State Security Court of Diyarbakir.
        The public prosecutor requested for the defendant a prison term up to 12 years for separatist propaganda.

        The weekly 2000'e Dogru of August 9-15, 1987, reports that many Armenian edifices in Turkey are not protected as historical monuments and all of them are subjected to natural destrcution or pillaging.
        According to the article, Yedi Kiliseler (The Seven Churches) and the Varak Monastery in the province of Van, built in the 16th Century as an education center, are now used as stable.
        Also the Churches of Kacit  and Elmacik have turned out ruins. As for the bridge over the Catak stream, the Armenian inscriptions on this edifice have been erased on the order of the Committee for the Protection of Historical Monuments.
        The daily Cumhuriyet of May 13, 1987, reports that, in the district of Nusaybin of the Mardin province, the Assyrian Monastery Meryakup has been abandonned by the local Christian population who have fled Turkey in last years. Presently, a Moslem family with nine children live in  this edifice.


        The daily Milliyet of June 24, 1987, draws attention to the warlike contents of the books distributed to schools by the National Education Ministry.
        One of these books entitled "Turkish rights in the Aegean Sea" reads: "The principles adopted ten years ago by Turkey have turned out obstacles rather than developing ones. Forgetting the principle of 'Be ready to war if you wishes peace and order' and adopting the principle of 'peace at home, peace in the world' has been the reason of Turkey's many losses."


        On September 6, 1987, the day of referendum, the Peace Court of Istanbul decided to confiscate throughout Turkey all copies of three daily newspapers, Hürriyet, Günaydin and Bulvar, for having published articles and headlines which may influence voters.
        Next day, the State Security Court of Istanbul issued a warrant  for the confiscation of the monthly review Yeni Cözüm, on grounds that an article entitled "Political detention and Class struggle" ignores Article 142 of the Turkish Penal Code.


        Eight members of the editorial board of the weekly Yanki, Nimet Arzik, Kurtul Altug, Ilhami Soysal, Turhan Temucin, Argun Berker, Haluk Oncel, Metin Catan and Attila Bartinlioglu were indicted by the State Security Court of Istanbul, on September 10, 1987, for having published a detailed article on Iranian leader Khomeiny's private life.
        Accused, according to Article 128 of the Turkish Penal Code, of provoking hostility between Turkey and a foreign country and retaliation against Turkish citizens, eight journalists risk prison terms up to 10 year each.


        Mrs. Nihal Dogan, producer of the Dutch TV programs for Turkish migrant workers, was detained in Izmir on July 29, 1987. Political police said that her entrance in Turkey had been banned by the Interior Ministry.

        The hearing on trade union rights in Turkey, organized by the Legal Affairs Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe was held on September 7th, 1987, in Paris.
        During the meeting, the committee members heard the evaluations of the representatives of the Turkish government, political parties, the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions (TURK-IS), the Confederation of Turkish Employers' Unions (TISK) as well as the Chairman of the banned Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions (DISK), Mr. Abdullah Bastürk.
        Analysing in brief the anti-democratic provisions of the Turkish labour legislation and the anti-labour practices of the Government, Mr. Basturk said:
        "In spite of the promises made by the ANAP government to ILO, no serious modifications in the trade union regulations were made since 1986. Some modifications introduced, especially by the law number 3299 changing the Article 8 of the Law Number 2822, were not of any importance in essence.
        "On the contrary, the ANAP government has restricted the trade union freedom further by various applications. For instance, the 'Regulations about the Measures to be taken by the local authorities during the Strikes and Lock-outs' issued on September 4th, 1986 by the Ministry of Internal Affairs has turned the right to strike completely unpracticable.
        "The resolutions dated April 24, 1985 of the Prime Ministry Superior Coordination Committee for the Economic Affairs about the applications to the contracted personnel is another example to the actions against the trade union freedom and rights.
        "Another significant subject related to DISK and its affiliate trade unions is that related to their properties. The military court has shut down DISK and its 28 affiliate trade unions by its decision taken without any statement of reasons. Nevertheless, nothing was stated about the properties of DISK and its affiliates that are still managed by the trustees illegally.
        "According to the Article 46 of the Law No. 2821 ratified by the National Security Council, 'the properties of the confederations and trade unions are transferred to the Treasury.'
        "However, the application of this law to DISK and its affiliate trade unions, whose trial still goes on, is impossible according to the fundamental principles of law stating that none of the penalties can be applied to the cases that started before the introduction of these penalties by law.
        "The demands for shut down of DISK and its affiliates were based, by the military prosecutor, on the Trade Union Law No. 274 dated 1963.
        "The DISK trial has not yet ended. Including the phase of cassation, it seems that it will take two or three more years under these circumstances.
        "However, even if the dissolution decision is approved and exacted, the transfer of the properties of DISK and its affiliate unions to the Treasury will still be impossible according to the clear order of the law.
        "The movable and immovable properties of DISK and its affiliates can be transferred either to the higher associations of the trade unions or and if this is impossible, at least to TURK-IS and its affiliate trade unions, if the dissolution decision is approved.
        "When the current value of the properties of DISK and its trade unions are calculated, they amount to approximately TL 350 billion  ($ 350 millions.)
        "These properties formed by the dues paid by the workers to their trade unions cannot be exploited by their real owners, the workers, but managed by the trustees appointed by the Martial Law commanders against the purposes of their existence and are ruined.
        "Our objections and the demands of the international associations of trade unions, our confederation ETUC and ILO are not taken into consideration and the same practice is held in effect."
        After the hearing the Legal Affairs Committee decided to deal with the subject after the early elections in Turkey.


        Prior to this meeting, the International Labour Organization (ILO) changed its tolerating position as regards the Turkish regime and placed it once again in the box.
        As recalled by our readers, during the International Labour Conference of 1986, the Turkish Government had deceived this international organization by claiming that it would modify all anti-democratic labour legislation as soon as possible. On this promise, Belgian trade union leader Jef Houthuys, acting as the Vice-president of the Committee for Applying Recommendations and Conventions, had persuaded the Conference to postpone to the next year the debate on the situation of human rights in Turkey. Whereas, the Turkish Government, since then,  has put in practice none of its promises. On the contrary, within last year DISK leaders were condemned to prison and some protest actions organized by TURK-IS were prevented by force.
        This year, Mr. Houthuys,  admitting that he had been deceived by the Turkish Government, asked the Committee to interrogate the representatives of the Turkish regime. Thereupon, alongside other countries where trade union rights are systematically violated, Turkey was placed on the list of the countries not applying recommendations and conventions.
        After lengthy debates on the situation in Turkey, on June 16, 1987, the Committee for Applying Recommendations and Conventions decided to calls on the Turkish Government to apply immediately its promises, and underlined that, if the promises are not kept, the ILO would have to recourse in next year to other means of pressure on Ankara.


        While the prices of consumption goods and services are still rocketing, the official commission charged with establishing minimum wages decided some derisory increases.
        According to the decision of June 24, 1987, minimum monthly gross salary will be TL 74,250 ($74.25), while it was TL 41,400 from 1985 to 1987. After social contributions and taxes are deducted, an employee can get only TL 49,094 ( $49.09) as monthly net salary, while it has been TL 28,000 since 1985.
        During the debates at the Commission, trade union representatives asked that the minimum monthly net salary should be set between TL 100,000 and TL 150,000, arguing that a family of three would need at least 150,000 TL to lead a life befitting a human being. In fact, even in the slum areas of Istanbul a one-room apartment can be rent at TL 40,000 for month. According to a survey published in the daily Cumhuriyet of September 1st, 1987, a family of four needs at least TL 136,300 for monthly kitchen expenditures.   
        The following table shows a wage-owner's working duration in order to buy some principal consuming goods in 198O and 1986:

GOODS                     1980                        1986
1 Kg Bread                1 h. & 9 m.             1 h. & 44 m.
1 Kg Meat              17 h. & 11 m.        21 h. & 9 m.
1 Kg Cheese          12 h. & 26 m.        15 h. & 55 m.
1 Kg Olives            10 h. & 58 m.        18 h. & 14 m.
1 pair of shoes    124 h. & 16 m.     236 h. & 23 m.

        The new minimum wage has been severely criticized by trade unions and the press. However, the Minister of Labour and Social Security, Mr. Mükerrem Tascioglu, answered the criticisms with the following argument:
        "Minimum salary is for an employee who just begins to work. This guy has no right to get married and to have two children. Why do you get married, if you do not have enough money in your pocket?"
        As for the average salaries of workers, according to the daily Milliyet of July 7, 1987, it is about TL 195,000 in petro-chemical works, TL 193,000 in metal works, TL 146,000 in food industry and TL 115,000 in textile.
        On the other hand, top rank military or civilian bureaucrats get the following monthly salaries:

                Army general                 TL 555,476
                Brigade general             TL 459,614
                Colonel                            TL 376,038
                Director general           TL 370,000
                Judge                                 TL 383,467
                Doctor                              TL 297,348
                Engineer                          TL 236,566

        For low-level public servants, monthly salary falls down to TL 72,407.
        The daily Milliyet of June 9, 1987, reports that the majority of the 47 persons who were apprehended while they were begging in the streets of Sivas were either low salaried public servants or their wives or children. They said that there was no other means for surviving since a monthly salary of TL 70,000 is not sufficient to cover their minimal expenditures.


        One of the most striking anti-demo-cratic practices of the Turkish regime has been the deprivation of the opponents of the regime of their Turkish citizenship. Though the number of the public figures who have been deprived of citizenship for political reasons is about 200, those who refuse to do their military service too have been the target of this repressive measure. So, the number of all those who have lost their citizenship in this way rose to 13.788 in 1987.
        On the occasion of Premier Ozal's visit to West Berlin on September 23, 1987, a group of the victims of this anti-democratic practice held a press conference, attended also by the representatives of the Human Rights League and the Alternative List of West Berlin.
        During Ozal's stay in West Berlin, the Presidency of the West Berlin City Assembly gave a reception in honour of those exiled Turkish and Kurdish opponents of the Ozal's regime.
        We reproduce the full text of the press communiqué signed by 43 political exiles on the 3rd page.
         "Since the September 12, 1980 military coup 13.788 people have been deprived of their citizenship. Under all the decrees concerning this practice appears the signature of Turgut Ozal, first as Vice-Premier and later on as Prime Minister.
        "Article 15 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights adopted by the United Nations provides for that everybody shall have the right to citizenship and nobody can be deprived arbitrarily of his citizenship. Turkey is one of the signatories of this declaration.
        "However, the undeniable right to citizenship obtained by birth has been, since the September 12, 1980 military coup, one of the most violated fundamental rights in Turkey.
        "We, who adopt the attachment to democracy and human rights as a fundamental principle, have been accused, while our right to citizenship was being violated, of "acting abroad against Turkey." Those who consider themselves and the anti-democratic regime that they established identical with Turkey have supposed that they could make us inefficacious in the opposition that we lead abroad against the regime of September 12. To such an extent that they, without having any proof in their hands, have deprived of their nationality those who could not be apprehended by police by claiming that they had fled the country. So, the practice of depriving of citizenship has been employed as a means of punishing and making inefficacious the opponents.
        "Prime Minister Ozal tries to give the impression that everything works in conformity with democratic norms and tribunals function independently and lawfully by respecting to the principle of "natural judge". Whereas, the real situation contradicts this claim. We believe that the following examples which instantly occur to mind are sufficient to vindicate our view:
        " - Though seven years have passed since the coup of , the trials against the Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions (DISK), the Peace Association and many political and democratic mass organizations are still going on at military tribunals.
        " - The bans on all political parties which had been efficient in Turkish politics prior to September 12, 1980, are still in force.
        " - Though martial law has been lifted, martial law tribunals are still functioning. Furthermore, special courts have been set up under the name of "state security courts" without taking heed of the principle of "natural judge."
        " - Articles 140, 141 and 142 of the Turkish Penal Code, unique in the world, have been aggravated and are still being applied. The present government carries out preparations with a view to aggravating again these articles.
        " - In last seven years 27 people have been executed for political reasons and 525 others condemned to death. The sentences of 136 condemned have been subjected to the approval of the Parliament.
        " - As it has been made public thanks to the hunger-strikes, prisons are still full of thousands of politically detained and condemned people. They are subjected to pressures and tortures incompatible with human dignity. It has been admitted by a governmental declaration that 1,244 people had died in prisons since the September 12 Coup. According to the findings of the Association of Human Rights (IHD), the number of those prisoners who were tortured to death rose to 149.
        " - The repression and massacres carried out on the Kurdish people of more than ten millions have been made more systematical with the adoption of the 1982 Constitution. Today, the Turkish Kurdistan inhabited by Kurds is ruled by the governors provided with extraordinary powers and many Kurdish villages are subjected to massacre and deportation.
        " - In Turkey, 1,683,000 people have been labelled and kept under a permanent surveillance. 300 thousands of them are banned to travel abroad.
        " - In addition to the 13,788 people already deprived of Turkish citizenship, 26 thousands more have been summoned to return to the country with the same menace.
        " - The Turkish consulates abroad continue the practice of seizing passports of Turkish citizens for their political opinions or acts.
        " - According to the information coming from the authorities, thousands of book, reviews and newspapers have been destroyed since September 12, 1980. In the course of the last period of three years and a half during which Turgut Ozal has been prime minister, 240 different publications have been the object of confiscation decisions and the authors, translators or publishers of these publications have been indicted. The practice of interdiction, confiscation and censorship on publications is still being carried on. Many publications appeared in Europe too are the object of interdiction.
        "It is not our personal salvation that we are looking for, but the right to citizenship which is our most fundamental right. We do not accept any bargaining to be imposed in exchange for the restitution of this right. Our problem is not a personal one, it is an integral part of the question of establishing in Turkey a democratic regime based on human rights.
        " - The annulment of all laws which, in contradiction with the European Convention on Human Rights, suppress the freedoms of opinion and conscience,
        " - And, parallel with this, the release of all political prisoners are the minimal prerequisites of being able to talk of the existence of a democratic regime in Turkey.
        "The restitution of our lifted right to citizenship must be considered within this context.
        "We have never lost our conviction that a democratic regime respecting human rights will be established one day in Turkey and that we shall carry on our life and work in our country. Once more we confirm here our this conviction."

Behice Boran (Chairwoman of t TIP),
Kemal Burkay (Secretary General of TKSP),
Sümeyra Cakir (musician),
Melike Demirag (musician),
Sanar Yurdatapan (musician, composer),
Nihat Behramoglu (poet),
Inci Tugsavul (journalist)*,
Dogan Özgüden (journalist-writer)*,
Umran Baran (journalist),
M. Melih Baran (journalist),
Yücel Feyzioglu (writer),
Fuat Saka (musician),
Hüseyin Erdem (writer),
Gültekin Gazioglu (Chairman of TOB-DER),
Kemal Daysal (Member of the DISK Executive )
Mehmet Karaca (Chairman of  MADEN-IS),
Metin Denizmen (Chairman of  BANK-SEN),
Turan Ata (Member of DISK Administrative Board )
Murat Tokmak (Member of DISK dministrative Board)
Yasar Arikan (Member of DISK Administrative Board )
Ekrem Aydin ( Member of DISK Administrative Board)
Bahtiyar Erkul ( Vice-Chairman of MADEN-IS),
Yücel Cubukcu (Secretary General of BANK-SEN),
Ismail Coban (painter),
Recep Orduseven (Vice-Chairman of BANK-SEN),
Ilhan Geçit (Vice-Chairman of BANK-SEN),
Halit Erdem (Secretary General of MADEN-IS),
Zeki Kilic (Vice-Chairman of SOSYAL-IS),
Aydin Yesilyurt (Regional Representative of DISK),
A. Taner Serin (Regional Representative of DISK),
Beria Onger (Chairwoman of IKD),
Zülal Kilic (Secretary General of IKD),
Serafettin Kaya ( lawyer),
A. Muhtar Sökücü (Chairman of  IGD),
Ergin Erkiner (editor),
Aydin Ucar (Chairman of the Kurdish People's House),
Sertac Bucak (engineer),
M. Ali Akyigit (Regional representative of BANK-SEN),
Haydar Isik (teacher),
Askin Baran (journalist),
Mahmut Baksi (writer),
Durdu Gevher (teacher),
Ihsan Aksoy (writer).

    *) Ozgüden and Tugsavul are editors of Info-Türk.


        The pressure on the publications of opposition has attained to an unimaginable level with the confiscation of the weekly magazine 2000'e Dogru for having published Atatürk's words on the Kurdish Question. The fact that even the words of the founder of the Republic of Turkey can be censored has given rise to a big reaction in Turkey as well as abroad.
        On January 16, 1923, just after the victory of the National Liberation War, Mustafa Kemal (later on named Atatürk, father of Turks), held a press conference in Izmir and said:
        "Our new constitution provides that a kind of autonomous local administrations will be set up. So, if the population of a province is Kurdish, they will have self-government. Besides, when we talk of the people of Turkey, we should mention them (Kurds) as well. If it is not done, they (Kurds) may create some problems for this reason. In present, the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) is composed of both Kurdish and Turkish deputies."
        Though appeared in the newspapers of January 16 and 17, 1923, this declaration of Atatürk has never been reprinted, even in the academic works edited by the Turkish History Institution (TTK), for 64 years.
        The left-wing 2000'e Dogru has, thanks to an insistent work, found the minutes of this important interview written in arabic letters and put them in the August 30-September 5, 1987, issue.
        However, the public prosecutor, apparently informed beforehand, immediately reacted and order the police to confiscate all copies in printing house. Two days after the confiscation, the State Security Court of Istanbul issued a warrant for the confiscation of the magazine.
        In addition to the material losses of the magazine, its responsible editor, Mrs. Fatma Yazici risks a heavy prison term by virtue of Articles 142/3 and 312/2 of the Turkish Penal Code, borrowed from the Penal Code of Mussolini.
        The confiscation of a periodical even in printing house before distribution has been made possible with the modification of the Turkish Press Code in 1983.
        On the application of this censorship even on Atatürk's own words, editors and renowned writers of Turkey's main newspapers and news agencies such as Sabah, Bulvar, Zaman, Tercüman, Cumhuriyet, Günes, Milliyet, Dünya, Yeni Gündem, Nokta, Söz, UBA, ANKA as well as the journalist associations have issued a joint communiqué protesting against this practice and asking for modification of the Turkish Press Code.
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