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


13th Year - N°153-154
July-August 1989
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


As the Ankara regime is coming out an ardent defender of the human rights
of the Turkish minority of Bulgaria, in Turkey, the country that it rules:

- coercion on Kurds is turning into extermination
- political prisoners are perishing in hunger strikes
- military tribunals are still pronouncing death penalty

    The Evren-Ozal dictatorship, which for years has been accused by the world opinion of oppressing ruthlessly the people of Turkey, came out all of a sudden as an ardent defender of human rights and freedoms.  But what it defends are not the human rights and freedoms of the people of the Republic of Turkey, but those of the Turkish ethnic minority of Bulgaria.
    It is a fact that about one million Turks of this neighbour country have for years been subjected to a national repression. They have been forced by the Bulgarian Government to change their Turkish names into Bulgarian ones, deprived of the right to communicate in their mother tongue and to develop their own culture. For these practices incompatible with the international conventions of human rights and the principles of socialism, the Bulgarian authorities no doubt deserve sharpest criticisms from all human right defenders. In fact, not only all the democratic forces, but also all Marxist organizations of Turkey, including pro-Soviet ones, have severely reproached Sofia for the oppression of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria. (See: Drama of Turkish immigrants from Bulgaria)
    As for the Ankara regime, when it pretends to be the defender of human rights in Bulgaria, looks completely ridiculous in this new role.
    Let alone the repression it has carried out for about nine years, even the last practices going on during these long hot summer days in Turkey display once again the despotic character of the present regime:
    - While Evren and Ozal were shedding crocodile tears for the Turks of Bulgaria, the coercion on the Kurdish people of Turkey was raised to the level of extermination of this people by the government forces in the Turkish Kurdistan.
    - The inhuman treatment of thousands of political convicts or detainees has become so unbearable that these victims of the State terrorism had to go on hunger strikes. The Government's brutal response to this action resulted in the death of two political detainees. It was a real premeditated murder by the rulers in Ankara.
    - Thousands of political detainees, who have been kept in prison without any conviction, are still being tried by military tribunals though martial law was lifted throughout Turkey. Recently, a military court in Ankara sentenced seven political prisoners to capital punishment and 39 others to life imprisonment.
    So, all these recent facts show once more that the place the Turkish regime in international arenas for human rights is the dock by the side of other countries violating human rights rather than the rank of prosecutor.


    Growing protest actions against inhuman treatment of political prisoners in Turkish jails have, following the death of two hunger strikers in the Aydin Prison, gained unprecedented dimensions.
At the moment of editing this article, about 2,000 political prisoners throughout Turkey were on hunger strike and the life of 70 strikers too were in danger.
    And it is the first time that all opposition  forces of the country have been engaged in different actions aimed at forcing the government to put an end the repressive practices in prisons and to proclaim a general amnesty.
    However, Prime Minister Ozal, taking no heed of protests, said "If the strikers, in spite of our efforts, refuse to be treated, let them die. Can we do something else?"
    The death of the two political prisoners, Mehmet Yalcinkaya and Huseyin Husnu Eroglu, occurred in the Aydin Prison on August 2, 1989, after the transfer of 280 hunger strikers from Eskisehir to Nazilli and Aydin prisons.
    Yalcinkaya and Eroglu, like their other comrades, already fainted from the  hunger strike which began on June 29. So, they were not in a state to endure a voyage of 300 kilometers in cars.
When the death of prisoners was heard, penitentiary authorities first claimed that they had fallen during a clash between political prisoners and guards. But later they contradict themselves by admitting that death was caused by the 35-day long hunger strike.
    Whatsoever be the reason, it was, for the relatives and defense lawyers of the victims, a premeditated murder committed by the Minister of Justice and penitentiary authorities.
    After the hunger strike began, pressure on the inmates of Eskisehir prison was already increased. The prison authorities used the discovery of two tunnels inside the building as a pretext to practice oppressive measures. All the inmates were banned from corresponding with their families or receiving food from outside. Some of the relatives said they were beaten up by prison guards while they were waiting to visit the inmates.   
    On July 20, in a protest against this repression, the relatives of 280 political inmates of Eskisehir prison threatened to immolate themselves if the prisoners' rights were not restored.
    On July 27,  the Association for Solidarity with Relatives of Prisoners (TAYAD) announced that the political detainees in the Ankara prison too were, on the pretext that a newly dug tunnel was discovered, subjected to a repressive operation.
    A group of the relatives, after having held a press conference at the Human Rights Association in Ankara, went to the Justice Ministry to speak with Oltan Sungurlu, the minister. However, neither the relatives nor the deputies accompanying them were allowed into the minister's office.
    Thereupon, the relatives held a demonstration on Kizilay, Ankara's main thoroughfare.     On August 2, the prisoners were evacuated following an instruction from the Ministry of Justice. The prisons of Nazilli and Aydin have already been notorious for inhuman treatment of prisoners. Therefore, the inmates of these jails have very often resorted to protest actions. Recently, on June 22, public prosecutor had indicted 28 political detainees of Nazilli prison for having carried out resistance against disciplinary measures.
    The transfer of prisoners and the death of two hunger strikers led to a series of protests. First, the families of the prisoners held a protest action in front of the Ministry of Justice. The police detained the mothers of five prisoners.
    Similar repressive measures were applied also to the relatives of some of the prisoners carrying out protest actions in front of Eskisehir, Aydin and Nazilli prison. Later on, the city of Aydin was placed under an emergency regime by cutting all contact between prisoners and their families and lawyers.
    The conditions in Turkish prisons were already below international norms. The regulations put in force one year ago on August 1st, 1988, more restricted rights in the prisons. Cutting hair, imposing to wear prison uniform or restricting the visits of relatives have led to protest actions as well in prisons as outside.
    For example, on July 16, in Istanbul, police used truncheons to disperse protesting relatives of inmates in Bayrampasa prison causing injuries. Five of the demonstrating relatives were detained by the police.
    The incidents followed a prison administration announcement that face-to-face visits by relatives would be allowed on the occasion of the religious holiday.
    Normally, inmates are separated from their relatives by double-pane, gauze-filled glass and iron bars, but on special occasions prison administrations allow inmates and their families to be physically reunited with no partitions.
    The first group of visitors was allowed into the Bayrampasa prison, but no inmates showed up to meet with them. Prison officials said the inmates demanded a larger space in which to receive their visitors than the one granted by the administration.
    When the open visit did not take place, the relatives of the inmates staged a sit-in demonstration on prison premises, prompting the administration to call in riot police. Despite warnings to disperse, the relatives resisted and police thereafter charged the crowd with sticks.
    Two newspaper photographers were injured in the clash and their cameras smashed to the ground by angry policemen. The scuffle continued outside the prison, as police beat some demonstrators and dragged them to police vans.
    Next day,  TAYAD announced that at least 50 relatives were treated for injuries inflicted by police harshness and they would seek court action against the prison administration.
    Another reason of the prisoners' resistance is the fact that some of them have been in prison for eight years though they have not yet been condemned. Their trials are still conducted by military courts despite the fact that martial law was lifted. Thousands of political detainees have been acquitted or condemned to prison terms of a few months or years after having passed their long years of youth in prison. The verdict at the Dev-Yol Trial is a most recent example of this unbearable injustice. (See the article "Dev-Yol Verdict" in this issue).
    For saving themselves from this injustice, political prisoners often attempt to escape prison at the expense of putting their life in danger. According to the daily Hurriyet of July 31, a total of 3,824 political detainees have escaped from prisons since the September 12, 1980 Coup.
    According to press reports, the strikers transferred from Eskisehir to Aydin carried on their action despite the pressure coming from penitentiary authorities. On August 17, 1989, on the 50th day of their action, at least 70 of the strikers were nearer to death.
    And the number of the prisoners going on hunger strike in solidarity with them was growing like a snowball. About 2,000 political detainees have recently gone on hunger strikes in Bayrampasa (Istanbul), Mamak (Ankara), Bartin, Bursa, Diyarbakir, Kahramanmaras, Iskenderun, Siirt, Malatya, Adana, Erzincan, Canakkale, Aydin, Buca (Izmir), Urfa, Ergani, Ceyhan, Amasya and Gaziantep prisons.

    One of the mass political trials which has been continuing since 1982 ended on July 19, 1989, with seven death sentences and 39 life imprisonments handed down.
    A total of 723 defendants were on trial at a military tribunal on charges of belonging to the left-wing organization DEV-YOL (Revolutionary Way), which has been accused of resorting to political violence in a view to overthrowing the existing political and social order.
    The military court handed down prison sentences to 346 defendants ranging from two years and nine months to 20 years. A total of 177 defendants were acquitted of all charges, while those who have died under detention number 23.
    The charges brought against the rest of the defendants were dropped for various procedural reasons.
    All sentences are pending appeal.
    There were 49 defendants present at the final hearing, all of them under arrest. The rest of the defendants had been released during the course of the trial, considering that the prison term that they face might not be longer that the time they passed under arrest.
    After hearing the verdict, the defendants holding up each other's hands formed a chain in the courtroom and shouted slogans and sang revolutionary songs.
    In their defense, the Dev-Yol defendants said that they had been indicted on the basis of confessions extracted from them under severe torture, and different groups of defendants had been forced to confess to the same 121 criminal acts.
    Dev-Yol claimed four defendants died in the prison as a result of torture used during the investigation.
    Oguzhan Muftuoglu, a leading member of Dev-Yol, said even before the verdict was read that the group would not accept the court's ruling as legal.
    "Throughout this case we have said that this tribunal is not competent to try us. We demanded the case be turned over to civilian courts. Despite all this you are still insisting on handing down a verdict. Your verdict is devoid of any legal and constitutional basis. It is illegitimate," Muftuoglu said.
    The spokesman for the group said the military tribunal is violating the constitution and its laws by holding trial at a place where martial law no longer exists.
    One of the reasons of the reactions against the verdict lays in the fact that military tribunals apply a double standard as they are dealing with political cases.
    The defendants of Dev-Yol have been condemned by virtue of Article 146 of the Turkish Penal Code. This article stipulates capital punishment or heavy prison terms for  "crimes against the State". According to the 1982 Constitution, those who have been condemned by virtue of this article can never be pardoned.
    But the Grey Wolves, militants of the extreme-right MHP, who were the main authors of the pre-coup political violence in Turkey, have only been condemned by virtue of Article 313 of the Turkish Penal Code. This article stipulates condemnations for "setting up organization with a view to committing crimes".  This article is applied for ordinary crimes, not for "crimes against the State". So, they can benefit from any possible amnesty. Already, the chief of the MHP, ex-colonel Turkes,  and other notorious Grey Wolves have been released and engaged in political life, while the left-wing militants are still suffering in prisons.
    22 lawyers of the Dev-Yol defendants announced on July 10 that they would introduce a complaint to the European Human Rights Commission for the fact that their clients have been kept in prison for over nine years as "accused".


    The inhuman attitude of the Turkish Government towards political prisoners has been put in evidence not only in the matter of hunger strikes, but also in the case of two political prisoners suffering from leukemia.
    One of these two prisoners, Hamdullah Erbil (See Info-Türk, June 1989, p.3), thanks to a international protest campaign, was released on June 21, 1989. But the Turkish Government this time resorted to another inhuman practice by refusing him a passport for a treatment in the FRG. Thereupon, Erbil was obliged to flee Turkey clandestinely. Since July 28, Erbil has been under the treatment of specialists in Hamburg where he asked for political asylum.
    The other political prisoner suffering from leukemia is Inkilap Dal. He was arrested after the military coup of September 12, 1980 for his opinions and spent his five years in different prisons.
    His health deteriorated when he was in the Aydin Prison and doctors diagnosed that he was suffering from leukemia. Although he was released last year, police authorities refused him a passport for a treatment abroad. After the liberation of Erbil, the campaign is now being developed for saving Dal from an early death.
    On the other hand, political prisoner Abdulkadir Konuk who was condemned to capital punishment escaped from a hospital on April 24, 1989, thanks to a successful operation organized by his comrades, while he was treated for a heart disease. After having fled Turkey, he went to Düren (FRG) as a candidate of political refugee and is now being treated by German doctors.


    A new scandalous fact concerning political trials in Turkey has recently been unveiled by the Turkish press. According to the information given by the daily Cumhuriyet on June 10 and July 24, 1989, the members of a same organization have been the object of contradictory judgments pronounced by different courts. As those who judged by military courts were being sentenced to heavy prison terms, the others who were brought before civilian after the lifting of martial law have recently been acquitted or simply exempted from trial on grounds that there was no evidence enough against the organization.
    The most striking examples of this injustice are the trials concerning the Confederation of the Progressive Trade Unions of Turkey (DISK) and the All Teachers' Union of Turkey (TOB-DER).
    After the 1980 coup d'état, martial law authorities, accusing the DISK of subversive activities, summoned its all leading officials to surrender to military authorities. Out of 1,477 officials who gave themselves up, 264 were condemned by a martial law court in Istanbul to prison terms of up to 10 years and remained for years in prison.
    But a part of the DISK officials, instead of surrendering, either remained underground or went abroad clandestinely.
    After the lifting of martial law, 495 defendants belonging to this category surrendered to civilian authorities. The public prosecutor of Bakirkoy in Istanbul who handled their case announced at the end of inquiry that the accusation against 495 DISK officials was groundless and released all of them. This decision by the civilian judiciary shows once more that 264 other DISK officials had been condemned without any convincing proof and remained in prison for years as victims of military injustice.
    The same inequality has been observed in the trials of the TOB-DER officials as well.
    After the military coup, a group of 49 teachers were arrested for leading TOB-DER and condemned to prison terms of up to 9 years by a military court in Ankara.
    Recently a group of 20 teachers, of whom 17 fled Turkey, were tried by a civilian court in Ankara for the same TOB-DER's pre-coup activities. Though accused of the same crime, all the 20 defendants were acquitted by the Criminal Court No.2 of Ankara which could not find any evidence against them. Among the acquitted officials are also the TOB-DER Chairman Gultekin Gazioglu, Secretary General Mustafa Tuzun and Treasurer Ismet Ozdemir.
    What is more, the two mass organizations, DISK and TOB-DER, had been closed down by military courts on the pretext that their leaders were involved in crimes against the State. But the recent decisions by civilian courts put in evidence that these sanctions too were also groundless.
    The lawyers of DISK and TOB-DER have taken the initiative in order to obtain the annulment of the judgment about the condemned officials and the reopening of  these two organizations.


    The rise of state terrorism was marked on June 22, 1989 by the opening of a second State Security Court in Istanbul. Besides, on June 14, the National Assembly voted the prolongation of state of emergency for four months from July 19 in eight Eastern provinces.
    To replace martial law tribunals, in 1984, eight State Security Courts had been set up in Istanbul, Ankara, Diyarbakir, Erzincan, Izmir, Kayseri, Konya and Malatya. 128 judges and prosecutors, including military ones, as well as 414 administrative personnel are charged at these courts. These courts deal with cases relating to State security, committed after the lifting of martial law. The acts committed earlier are still being dealt by martial law courts.
    The first State Security Court of Istanbul has already been overcharged with political cases against hundreds of opponents of the regime.
    The State Security Court No.2 of Istanbul is first dealing with the case against 129 people accused of having celebrated May Day without previous permission.
    A 14-year old boy, Ö.B., takes part among these first defendants of the new court.


    The leaders of the Human Rights Association of Turkey (IHD) are very often pursued and indicted for their declarations or actions in defense of human rights.
    Recently, Akin Birdal, the IHD general secretary, faces a 6-year prison sentence on charges of insulting the Turkish judiciary and Parliament in a speech he made at a rally in Istanbul on November 27, 1988.
    Earlier, on June 9, the prosecutor of the State Security Court in Ankara opened another inquiry about the talks of Birdal and three other IHD officials, Mahmut Tali Ongoren, Yavuz Onen and Bulent Tanor, with the members of the European Commission of Human Rights which took place in Paris on March 10, 1989.
    Same day, in Istanbul, the public prosecutor started another inquiry about Birdal, Emil Galip Sandalci, chairman of the IHD Istanbul Section, Murat Celikkan and Esra Koc, for the speeches that they made at a meeting in Istanbul in February 1989.
    On June 28, seven officials of the Antalya branch of the IHD were subjected to an inquiry for a concert by popular singer Rahmi Saltuk which they organized on May 6, 1989.
    Same day, Dr.Alparslan Berktay, Izmir chairman of IHD, was indicted for his declaration against torture practice in Turkey.
    On July 8, fourteen human rights activists including Emil Galip Sandalci, Istanbul chairman of IHD, and Mustafa Eryuksel, chairman of the Association for Solidarity with Relatives of Prisoners (TAYAD), were indicted by the public prosecutor for having issued a communiqué without getting permission from local authorities. Each faces imprisonment of up to six months.
    On July 18, the Eskisehir branch of the IHD was closed down by local authorities on the pretext that police discovered some banned publications in its office.


    Halil Ibrahim Celik, the mayor of Sanliurfa, was indicted on July 24 by the State Security Court in Ankara on charges of violating the Constitution's secular rules. He faces a prison sentence of up to 12 years.
    In the indictment by the prosecutor, Celik is claimed to be a member of Islamic fundamentalist Turkish organizations based in Europe, such as the Union of Islamic Associations and Communities (ICCB) and the European Organization of National Vision (AMGT).
    Celik won the local elections in the southeastern town of Sanliurfa last March as a candidate from the Welfare Party (RP). He got into trouble in March when he declared at a meeting of RP mayors at the party headquarters that he was not a supporter of secularism or the principles of Ataturk.
    According to the indictment, Celik had a special mission from the fundamentalist Turkish organizations in Europe, which have as their aim the overthrow of the democratic regime in Turkey and the establishment of an order based on Islamic rules. The prosecutor also charges Celik of having received substantial financial support from both ICCB and AMGT for his election campaign.


    2.6, in Siirt, police announced the arrest of 37 people accused of supporting the PKK. Among them are also some members of the main opposition SHP.
    4.6, in Istanbul, police arrested eight presumed militants of the People's Liberation Party/Front of Turkey (THKP/C).
    6.6, eleven alleged members of PKK were arrested in Agri.
    12.6, in Ankara, six members of the Greens Party (YP) were indicted for their protest demonstration at the Armaments Fair in May 1989.
    14.6, three members of the Revolutionary Communist Union of Turkey (TDKB) were condemned to 12 years and 6 months in total.
    11.6, the State Security Court of Ankara sentenced eight alleged Dev-Yol members to 8-year imprisonment each. 
    16.6, police operations in Adana, Icel and Antalya resulted in the arrest of 24 alleged PKK members.
    19.6, police arrested two militants of Dev-Sol in Istanbul.
    27.6, a 33-year old Greek woman, Soussana Chataigianni, was arrested at the Ankara University on the charge of having written some political slogans on her examination paper.
    28.6, two alleged members of Dev-Sol were condemned by the State Security Court of Istanbul to 4 years and 2 months each for having participated in May Day celebrations.
    28.6, the second trial of 144 alleged members of the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) ended in the condemnation of 36 defendants to prison terms of from 16 months up to 9 years and 4 months. Their first trial at the Martial Law Court of Ankara had been resulted with the condemnation of 227 defendants. On the appeal by lawyers, the Military Court of Cassation had approved the verdict for 91, but overruled 137 other condemnations. At their second trial, 7 new defendants were added to the accused.
    29.6, the State Security Court of Ankara sentenced four alleged PKK members to 33-year imprisonment in total.
    30.6, police made an irruption into to the Zeytinburnu branch of the Popular Clubs (Halkevleri) in Istanbul and arrested its five officials.
    1.7, the offices of the Students' Association at the Marmara University in Istanbul were raided by police and eleven students detained. After their release following a 10-day detention, students said that they were tortured during their interrogation. Student Ilhan Kaygusuz claimed that torturers had introduced a bottle into his anus.
    5.7, in Istanbul, police arrested 13 alleged militants of the TKP/ML.
    25.7, in Ankara, twelve militants of Dev-Sol were brought before the State Security Court for having staged protest actions in the capital city. Each defendant faces imprisonment of up to 51 years.


    As the rulers in Ankara were raising the question of national repression in Bulgaria, the Turkish Army intensified during summer days the terror campaign against the Kurdish people in the Turkish Kurdistan.
    However, the more the repression is increased, the Kurdish guerrilla's implantation within the local population is getting deeper and stronger.  Thanks to this popular support, the Kurdish guerrillas have recently stricken heavy blows to security forces in the  Eruh, Sirnak and Cudi areas. The region covering these areas is known as "Botan" by Kurds and the guerrillas of the Workers' Party of Kurdistan (PKK) have been fighting there for years with a view of founding the first "liberated Kurdish zone".
    The daily Tercuman of August 7, 1989 reports that in a five-year period running from August 15, 1984 to July 19, 1989, armed clashes have led to 1,259 deaths of which 300 are members of security forces, 419 Kurdish militants and 540 citizens. But the figures given by the Kurdish side are higher than the official ones.
    On August 16, 1989, the National Liberation Front of Kurdistan (ERNK), led by the PKK, held a press conference in Brussels on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the beginning of guerrilla warfare in Turkish Kurdistan. The spokesman of the front announced that, within the last one-year period, the guerrilla units belonging to the People's Liberation Army of Kurdistan (ARGK) have carried out 47 assaults, 17 sabotages, 17 ambushes and 7 minings. As a result of these operations, 797 people in the service of the Turkish government have been killed and 1,140 wounded. the Turkish government forces lost 2 majors, 3 captains, 3 first lieutenants, 11 second lieutenants, l sergeant, 667 soldiers, 79 informers and village protectors, 16 counter-guerrilla officers, 3 members of the National Intelligence Agency (MIT), 14 policemen and 1 guard of military post.
    According to the same source, the ARGK lost only 37 fighters in one year.
    Lt. Gen. Hikmet Koksal, commander of the local gendarmerie corps, held a meeting with local security officials and military commanders in the town of Sirnak in Siirt on July 19 and planned a widespread operation in the mountains around the town where PKK activity has stepped up noticeably in recent weeks.
    Claiming that the PKK fighters hide themselves in the Cudi Mountain, the security forces stepped up their preparations for a raking operation in the area. Within the framework of this operation, four villages on the skirts of the mountain, Balveren, Arakoy, Gecitboyu and Dagkonak, have already been raided by military troops and 5,000 Kurdish peasants banned to leave their villages. Because of this measure, peasants even cannot graze their cattle and work in their fields. Practically, they have been condemned to hunger.    
    According to some rumors, the military may even use chemical weapons for annihilating guerrilla shelters in the mountain.
    A social Democratic Populist Party (SHP) deputy, Cumhur Keskin said at a press conference on July 25, 1989 that three men killed during the clashes near the village of Yoncali, who were described as PKK members by Turkish Radio and Television (TRT), were in fact ordinary village residents.
    The bodies of the three men were burned in a haystack on the orders of the major commanding the military unit in order to destroy evidence, the deputy said. The people of Yoncali are concerned that three other men missing from the same village might have met the same fate. Mustafa Orhan, the muhtar (headman) of Yoncali, filed a petition of complaint at the local prosecutor's office.
    "Since 1984," said SHP deputy, "the security of individuals in the area has been completely extirpated through these practices of the security forces."
    Later on, SHP leader Erdal Inonu sent a three-man party delegation to Hakkari to probe allegations by the villagers of Yoncali. Fikret Unlu, spokesman of the group, said the people living in the area are stunned and helpless, and are caught between the fire of Turkish security forces and the PKK militants.
    "From the beginning we urged the government to act with restraint in this area, to put an end to the system of village guards and to respect human rights. The village guards -civilian volunteers armed, trained and paid by the government to fight the terrorists, are also oppressing the people. The situation in the area is extremely serious. None of the citizens in this area has any respect left for the security forces," he added.


    Lawyers for the residents of Yesilyurt village in Mardin applied to the European Human Rights Commission on June 26, 1989, claiming that all legal attempts to bring to trial security officials accused of forcing people to eat human excrement have been exhausted in Turkey.
    The Yesilyurt residents claimed that a gendarmerie patrol commanded by Major Cafer Tayyar Caglayan raided the village on the night of January 14 searching for Kurdish guerrillas. During the raid, men from the village were beaten and forced to eat human excrement when they said they did not know the whereabouts of members of the Workers' Party of Kurdistan (PKK).
    The charges by the residents were first investigated by Interior Ministry inspectors and legal action was taken against Major Caglayan and the soldiers. However, the court refused to try the defendants on charges of making people eat excrement.
    At the end of June, the Supreme Court in Ankara ruled that Major Caglayan should be tried in a criminal court. But the charges brought against him do not include forcing the people of Yesilyurt to eat excrement.


    The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) claimed that Kurdish refugees in the Kiziltepe camp in Turkey were given poisonous bread on June 8 and they were still suffering from stomach troubles.
    Three members of the refugee committee in the camp said that about 50 of the refugees suffered partial paralysis as a result of eating the bread which they said was injected with poisonous chemicals.
    They claimed that doctors among the Kurdish refugees found 1,200 of the 1,800 loaves to contain poisonous substances.


    The main opposition Social Democratic Populist Party (SHP), on June 8, 1989, asked the High Board of Judges and Prosecutors to take legal action against two Ankara state security court prosecutors who were inciting public violence by their behaviour.
    On June 5, when students boycotted lunches on the campus of the Middle East Technical University (ODTU) in Ankara to protest restrictions on student associations, prosecutor Ulku Coskun instructed the local gendarme unit to detain the protesters.
    About 140 students in two campus buses were surrounded by rifle-wielding gendarmes. Informed about the tension, SHP deputy Fikri Saglar went to the campus and,  after a nine-hour bargaining, persuaded the security commander to release the students by giving the guarantee that eight students would go to the state security court the following morning for questioning.
    On June 6, when Saglar went to the State Security Court he was acknowledged that prosecutor Coskun opened an investigation into the behaviour of Colonel Balci for not obeying his instructions to arrest all the students in the buses. When he discussed Coskun's attitude with the chief prosecutor Nusret Demiral, the latter shouted: "If need be I will tear down the entire ODTU."
    Following this complaint, 70-year-old lawyer Ibrahim Acan is suing prosecutor Ulku Coskun for 10 million TL ($4,760) in damages, claiming that the prosecutor insulted him.
    Lawyer Acan was imprisoned for six weeks on charges of making derogatory statements about the military judicial system in a book he wrote. He was cleared of the charges at the end of his trial. Acan claims that prosecutor Coskun threatened to slap him in the face and insulted him at the corridor of the court house without any apparent reason.


    To intimidate teachers and students, the National Education Ministry has resorted a new procedure.
    In the town of Saruhanli, on June 12, the National Education Director made an irruption into the 2nd class of the 7 Eylul Primary School. After having ousted class teacher Hayri Odabasi, he interrogated one by one 27 students by forwarding them a series of questions such as:
    - Was he sorry for worker who was shot dead on May Day in Istanbul?
    - Are there the words of "rich" and "poor" in the songs he taught you?
    - Which newspaper he reads regularly?
    - On May Day, which newspaper your teacher brought to school?
    - Does he speaks against the police?


    On the other hand, the torment of the 15-year old high school student, M.C., is still going on despite the protests from democratic circles as well in Turkey as abroad. Accused of communist propaganda in the school, he had been arrested in Izmir. (See Inf-Turk, Jan 1989).
    After been kept for six months under arrest, he was freed by the court. But recently has was placed again under the surveillance of legal medicine for determining whether or not he was conscious when he made "communist propaganda."
    According to the daily Milliyet of June 16, the doctor who questioned M.C. said him: "Would not be better at this age to run after girls instead of talking of politics?"
    Since the legal medicine's report was not yet arrived and he still remained under surveillance for this delay, M.C. announced on July 26 that he would lodge a complaint against the doctor.


    A mass rally organized by doctors and health service personnel in Ankara on June 17 was banned by local authorities.
    Until that date, doctors and health service personnel had been trying to put their demands before the public by holding night-long vigils at state hospitals, spending at least 20 minutes examining each patient and refusing to prescribe expensive drugs. All these actions were intended to draw attention to the harsh working conditions and low pay of government health personnel who, under current Turkish legislation, are not allowed to strike.
    In Istanbul, too, the governor refused to give permission for a demonstration organized by nurses for June 18. Thereupon, six nurses left black nurses' caps in front of the governor's office to protest the decision. Police on guard detained the nurses and took them away in police vans.


    If a bill now before the Prime Minister is adopted by the National Assembly, Turkish citizens will once again be allowed to own guns. According to the draft, people who do not have criminal records and can provide a doctor's certificate showing they have no psychiatric disorder will be eligible to buy firearms from the government.
    At present, only 200,000 people are permitted to carry firearms. Members of security forces and the army, cabinet ministers, deputies, judges, prosecutors, governors and certain municipal officials may carry firearms, even if they are retired. Besides, hunters, people carrying money for private companies, and private security organizations working for banks and other companies are authorized to carry firearms.
    If the draft is adopted, Turkey will also import firearms through the Foundation for Strengthening the Police Organization (PTGV).
    Carrying firearms had been restricted after the coup of 1980 with a view to prevent political violence.
    The new draft is criticized by the opposition who argued that if it were implemented the country would look like a setting for a Western movie and political violence may reemerge.


    The book edited by by Dr. Baskin Oran, who is one of the hundreds of university professors who lost their jobs under martial law, is the first of its kind in Turkish. It makes ample use of Evren's numerous speeches, newspaper statements and chats he has had with journalists since he came to power nine years ago.
    The excerpts from Evren's speeches in the book include the statements on various subjects including capital punishment:
    "Should we not hang these people instead of feeding them in prison? Capital punishment exists both in our religion and in the Bible too," reads some quotes from General Evren's past speeches.
    "They are spreading gossip that I am going to get married. If I catch those who are saying this I will make it worse for them than September 12," goes another quote  from Evren.
    When Evren visited West Germany last year he did an about face and began expressing liberal ideas.
    "As if it were not he who had defended capital punishment in the past, he announced he was against hanging. He also said he had no objection to the legalization of the Communist Party," said Oran.
    "I have read the 3,000 pages of speeches he has delivered since 1980 and what the newspapers have published about him over the past nine years. Now I can say I am fully familiar with the simple soldierly logic that Kenan Evren possesses," said Oran. "He was an insignificant officer. When he was awaiting his retirement he found himself the army chief and later the president as a result of unbelievable coincidences. He has a naive personality. That is to say he is not a cunning person. Sometimes he is unaware of the consequences of what he is saying. He doesn't see any difference between commanding a company of soldiers and running the whole country."


    Humorist Aziz Nesin and his friends in the Committee for Monitoring Democracy made an unsuccessful attempt to visit General Kenan Evren on June 12 to give him the minutes and resolutions of the Congress for Democracy held in Ankara in May 1989.
    Political party leaders, intellectuals, writers and professionals participated at the Democracy Congress which discussed problems of democratic process in Turkey and military interventions taking place in 10-year periods.
    The group of six, including Aziz Nesin, was not allowed to enter the Cankaya presidential palace on the grounds that they did not have a prior appointment with the president.


    Nine members of the popular music ensemble "Group Yorum" were arrested on July 8 in Mersin where he had arrived for a concert, organized by a trade union. Police took into custody 20 fans as well.
    It is reported by the press that during interrogation police subjected two members of the group, Metin Kahraman and Hilmi Yarayici, to torture. Besides, torturers attempted to verify whether of not three female members of the group, Elif Sumru Goker, Aylin Sesen and Selma Cicek are virgin. But the latter resisted against such an humiliating treatment.
    Group Yorum is famous especially for their prison songs and has very often been harassed by the police for having sung Kurdish ballads.
    When they arrived in Mersin, police informed them that their concert was banned by the local authorities. Thereupon, they staged a demonstration in protest against this interdiction.
    Accused of unauthorized demonstration, each member of the group faces a prison term of up to three years.
    As they were under arrest, their comrades set up another musical ensemble under the name of "New Group Yorum". But the very first concert by this new group on July 28 in Antalya was also banned by local authorities.


    1.6, Dr. Arslan Yuzgun, author of the book entitled "Women with Blue Identity Cards", was arrested for unauthorized demonstration when he attempted to burn, in front of the Taksim Monument in Istanbul, a decision to censor his book.
    11.6, the district governor of Mudanya banned the projection of the film entitled "Ordinary Fascism" at the Cinema Days.
    18.6 poet Ahmet Telli was arrested by the State Security Court of Ankara for his speech at a panel organized at the Gazi University.
    28.6, in Ankara, a photoreporter of the daily Tan, Nurettin Kurt was arrested by the judge of a criminal court for taking photos at a trial of misuse and sent handcuffed to prison.
    29.6, two journalists of the daily Sabah, reporter Bekir Coskun and responsible editor Atilla Hamzacebi, were indicted for a series of articles entitled "Autumn in the Royal Garden". For these articles about the Prime Minister's family, they face imprisonment of up to 3 years each.
    7.7, in Iskenderun, a concert by a popular folk singer, Sadik Gurbuz, was banned by the order of the Governor.
    21.7, the Ministry of Culture censored three Kurdish ballads in the musi-cassette entitled "Hoy Nare", produced by famous folk singer Rahmi Saltuk. The artist qualified this decision ridiculous, because these three ballads have been sung for more than 1500 years in Anatolia.


    The screen blackened abruptly July 18 night without explanation as the government-controlled Turkish Radio and Television (TRT) was airing a 1951 French film, "Les Jeux Interdits" (Forbidden Games). The screen went live with the start of the next program, leaving viewers puzzled as to how the film ended.
    Next day, TRT officials made the explanation that they discontinued showing the film because TRT had received phone calls from several viewers claiming that the film was laden with Christian propaganda.
    While the liberal and progressive Turkish press said the discontinuation of René Clément's film was a broadcasting scandal, the Islamic press expressed its gratitude to newly appointed TRT Director Kerim Aydin Erdem.
    The film showed a young boy and girl collecting crosses from churches, graveyards and hearses during World War II. The story did not have any apparent connection with Christianity except for the symbolic crosses collected by the children as a game.


    It is the first time after the 1980 coup that the act of destroying books was condemned by judicial authorities in Turkey.
    On July 11, 1989, the Administrative Court No.5 of Ankara condemned the Turkish Prime Ministry to pay 35 millions Turkish Liras ($15,000) to publisher Suleyman Ege whose 133,607 books had been confiscated in 1982 and destroyed by burning in 1982.
    20.6, the weekly 2000e Dogru was confiscated for "separatist propaganda."
    22.6, the State Security Court in Istanbul ordered the seizure of copies of the program of the United Communist Party of Turkey (TBKP), which was published on June 19, 1989.
    30.6, the June issue of the monthly Emek Dunyasi was confiscated for "communist and separatist propaganda."
    2.7, the June issue of the monthly Emek Sosyalizm  was confiscated for "communist propaganda." Already three former issues of the same review had been subjected to same measure. The responsible editor of the review, Abuzer Kilic faces an imprisonment of up to 100 years for the articles in the confiscated issues.
    12.7, the July issue of the monthly Yeni Cozum was confiscated for "communist and separatist propaganda."
    21.7, the Police Chief of Tunceli ordered the confiscation of all printed works of some famous writers and artists such as Nazim Hikmet and Yilmaz Guney.
    30.7, the July issue of the monthly youth review Devrimci Genclik was confiscated for "separatist publication."


    International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights addressed a report entitled "Human Rights Concerns in Selected Helsinki Signatory Countries" to the CSCE Human Rights Meeting in Paris on May-June 1989.
    Concerning Turkey, the report underlines the following facts:
    "TORTURE:  Torture continues in Turkey, despite government denials. Almost all suspects in political cases are tortured during police detention, as are most suspects in ordinary crimes. Amnesty International reported that 17 people died as a result of torture in 1987, and that five died in the first half of 1988. The Turkish Government has acknowledged that 32 people died under torture between December 1979 and March 1989. AI has a list of 47 people alleged to have died from torture in that period and 172 additional cases of deaths in custody about which the organization has asked for information from the government.
    "POLITICAL PRISONERS: Thousands of political prisoners remain in Turkish prisons and detention centers, some still awaiting the outcome of trials that began some years ago. The Turkish Human Rights Association estimates that there are 5,000 political prisoners; in December 1988, Prime Minister Ozal said that there were 3,800. Hundreds of these prisoners have been detained or convicted merely for the peaceful exercise of their right to free expression.
    "THE KURDISH MINORITY: Guerrilla warfare continues in southeastern Turkey. Civilians in small villages find themselves caught between the Turkish military and the militant PKK (the Kurdish Workers' Party that advocates a separate Kurdish nation), attacked and abused by both sides.
    "The Turkish government denies the existence of a Kurdish minority in Turkey, and prohibits Kurdish literature, music and the use of the Kurdish language for official purposes. Kurds are forbidden to give their children Kurdish names; if they do not comply, the courts change the names into Turkish ones. Kurdish villagers have been forcibly relocated, beaten and abused by the military.
    "FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION: More criticism of the government is being published in the Turkish press than at any time since the military coup in September 1980, but editors of publications run the risk of harassment, criminal prosecution and prison terms. Between September 1980 and April 1988, 2,127 journalists were tried in 1,426 cases. Currently, at least 41 journalists and editors are in prison because of what they have written or published. Some are serving sentences that total 600 or 700 years (by Turkish law, a journalist can be sentenced to seven and a half years for each offending article), though no one will serve more than 36 years, the maximum permitted under Turkish law.
    "FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT: Since 1980, some 300,000 Turkish citizens have been denied passports and, therefore, the freedom to travel abroad. The Turkish passport law denies passports to various categories of people, including those whom the Minister of the Interior deems undesirable to leave the country for security reasons."
    On the other hand, Helsinki Watch, in its recent report entitled "Paying the Price - Freedom of Expression in Turkey," announced that many journalists, editors and writers are still suffering from harassment, criminal charges, detention, torture, trials and imprisonment.
    The report analyzes freedom of expression in all media in Turkey as well as the freedom to form and join associations.
    In an appraisal of the present situation, based on a visit by Helsinki Watch to Turkey in 1988 and information given by Turkish press including Info-Türk, the report concludes: If Turkey wishes to become part of the community of nations that respects individual liberties and rights, it must rewrite or sharply revise the 1982 Constitution and abolish the many laws that drastically restrict its citizens' freedoms. It must also put an end to torture and to the practice of detaining people for long periods of time under inhuman and degrading conditions."


    The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) announced on July 2 that it will send a group of representatives to Turkey to study the practice of freedom of the press in this country.
    A report on press freedom sent to Brussels by the Turkish Journalists' Union (TGS) was studied with concern by the IFJ. As a result, it was decided to send a fact-finding group to Turkey.
    The statement issued by the executive board said press freedom is very important in Turkey because it is a country which has applied for full membership in the European Community.   
    On the other hand, the International Federation of Newspaper Owners (FIEJ), following its convention held on June 10-14,1989 in Berlin, called the Turkish Government to put an end to pressures on the Turkish press.


    The Turkish Government has still not approved the official establishment of the Turkish section of PN, the international association of playwrights, essayists and novelists.
    Novelist Yasar Kemal, who is the founding chairman of the Turkish PEN, said a group of Turkish writers met seven-an-a-half months ago to set up the local branch of the association, but government bureaucracy has prevented it functioning fully. In Turkey, government approval is needed for establishment of associations with international affiliations.
    The board elected by the founders would resign if the government did not give its final approval, said Yasar Kemal.


    The Labour Ministry announced new monthly minimum wages as 225,000 TL  for workers over 16 years of age and 155,250 for those under 16 years of age. After deductions for taxes of various kinds, people of 16 will get, from August 1st, 1989, an average of 141,975 TL ($66) per month and those under 16, an average of 97,760 TL ($45) per month.
    The Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions (TURK-IS), which did not take part in the last meeting of the Minimum Wage Determining Commission, does not consider the new wage levels high enough. According to TURK-IS, Mrs. Imren Aykut, Labour Minister, can only by a pair of shoes with the new minimum wage.
    The leader of the Correct Way Party (DYP) Suleyman Demirel said the new minimum wage was a disappointment. He claimed that the minimum wage should be 300,000 TL a month and tax-free.
    In fact, according to the daily Cumhuriyet of July 1st, 1989, only the kitchen expenditures of a family of four persons reach 388,060 TL.
    On the other hand, in June, the members of Parliament raised their monthly salaries from 2.22 million TL up 4.5 million TL, while the government considers sufficient 141,975 TL for workers.


    The lowering of Turkish flags to half-staff for two days to mark the death of Ayatollah Khomeini has led angry reactions in opposition circles.
    Turkish law says the prime minister's office is entitled to declare days of national mourning when the Turkish flag can be lowered to half-staff. However, until now the star-and-crescent has been lowered only during the funerals of heads-of-state of friendly nations, and on November 10, the anniversary of the death of Kemal Ataturk, founder of the Republic.
    Tufan Dogu, deputy general secretary of the main opposition SHP, reminding that Khomeini insulted Ataturk on every possible occasion, said: "The lowering of the Turkish flag on the death of Khomeini -who has no official title in Iran except that of religious leader- is nothing less than irresponsible. What Khomeini did in Iran was not a revolution, but a mass murder. We deeply deplore the government's decision to lower the flags."
    The government was also criticized for lowering the Turkish flag before the NATO Headquarters in Brussels. Only the Turkish star-and-crescent among the flags of 16 NATO allies was at half-staff in Brussels on June 5-6.


    All British nationals entering Turkey after November 1, 1989, will have to require visas.
    In June this year, in retaliation to the British Government's decision to require visa from all Turkish nationals, including holders of diplomatic or service passports, Turkey announced British civil servants planning to come to Turkey after August 1st would have to apply for visas.
    However, this regulation proved difficult to implement because Britain issues only one type of passport for all British nationals. British diplomats in Turkey said that they were unable to discriminate between British passport holders. Thereupon, Ankara decided to require all British citizens to obtain visa.
    The restriction makes Britain the first European country from which Turkey requires visas.
    Since 1980, beginning with the FRG and the Benelux countries, almost all European countries, except Spain, Italy, Portugal, Ireland, Austria, Rumania and Yugoslavia, have been obliging Turkish nationals, including those who work and live in Europe, to get visa in order to enter their territory. However, Turkish diplomats and high level functionaries are exempted from visa obligation. For this reason, the Turkish Government has never resorted to a retaliation.
    Now, when the high bureaucrats face the same problem in their voyage to the Britain, Ankara reacted immediately.


    The International Labour Organization (ILO), during its annual meetings in Geneva at the end of June 1989, included once again Turkey into the "black list" of the countries that violate international labour regulations.
    First, a committee of experts raised the question of the Law No. 1402 concerning martial law administration. This law authorizes martial law commanders to fire anyone from his post even if there is not any evidence against him. The Human Rights Association of Turkey (IHD), prior to the ILO meeting, announced that 9,400 people had been the victim of this law during the 7-year period of martial after the 1980 coup. Although martial law lifted throughout Turkey, many of these victims have not yet been allowed to return to their posts.
    According to ILO's General Assembly, this law is not at all compatible with the ILO's Convention No. 111.
    The General Assembly also declared that Turkey does not respect the freedoms of trade union. The fact that the ILO's conventions No. 87 and 151 concerning trade union freedoms have not yet been ratified by Ankara is considered as a proof of the Turkish Government's anti-trade union attitude.
    Ankara is also accused, in the ILO decision, of disrespecting the ILO convention No.98 concerning collective bargainings. Despite the ILO's warning in past years, Ankara still deprives some trade unions of the right to collective bargaining and maintains the ban on strike in many economic sectors.


    The appointment of Morton Abramowitz as the new US ambassador to Ankara has led to strong reaction as well from the left as from the right in Turkey because of his previous involvement in the affairs of other countries.
    The Socialist Party (SP) charged that Abramowitz has been sent to Turkey to intervene in domestic politics shortly before the presidential nomination to take place in this autumn. The Secretary General of the party, Yalcin Buyukdagli, said that Abramowitz  had not been accepted as an ambassador by countries such as Egypt, Malaysia and Pakistan on the grounds that he attempted to mastermind coup d'états in these countries.
    For the Welfare Party (RP), fundamentalist, Abramowitz is not acceptable simply because of his Jewish origin.
    Twenty years ago, similar reactions were manifested against the then US Ambassador, Robert Komer, because he was known as an active collaborator of the CIA. The hostility against Komer was resulted in the burning of his car during his visit to the Middle East Technical University (ODTU) in Ankara.


    The repressive policy of Bulgarian Government towards Turkish ethnic minority on the one hand, on the other, the provocative attitude of the Turkish Government on this question both led to a dreadful disaster for hundreds of thousands Turks of Bulgaria.
    Mid-August 1989, the number of immigrants forced to go to Turkey climbed to 260,000. However, the Bulgarian train which was bringing an average of 1,000 to 1,200 immigrants to the border station of Kapikule every day, recently had an average of 600 passengers.
    According to the immigrants, Bulgarian authorities try to stem the exodus of ethnic Turks because Bulgaria is faced with serious shortages in its work force.
    As the Council of Europe, the NATO and Turkey's ally countries were expressing their concern on this question, the Bulgarian Discussion Club, an unofficial association of intellectuals who support glasnost and perestroika issued a strongly worded communique criticizing their government for "creating a national crisis."
    In the communiqué addressed also to the Bulgarian Parliament, the association says: "Now that more than 200,000 Bulgarian citizens who feel themselves to be ethnic Turks have emigrated from our country and hundreds of thousands more are preparing to leave, the state is threatened by a general crisis. This crisis, which has economic, political, moral and ideological dimensions, is the direct result of an abrupt change in policies toward citizens with Turkish ethnic consciousness that took place in 1984." The group demands a public investigation into the origins and legality of the policy of assimilation against the ethnic Turks.
    The Bulgarian intellectuals, however, described the government in Turkey as "one of the most savagely oppressive in the world today."
    Despite the continuing influx of ethnic Turks from Bulgaria there has also been a trickle in the opposite direction. Though their number is for the time being a few hundreds, more returns are expected in the coming months.
    The Turkish officials claim that those who return could not bear to live without other members of the family left in Bulgaria.
    However, some families have decided to return because of the high cost of living and the difficulty of finding a job and a house. In comparison with the living conditions and social securities in Bulgaria, Turkish immigrants find themselves all of a sudden on the brink of an absolute poverty.
    Those immigrants who do not wish to stay in Turkey are questioned by intelligence officials before they are given permission to leave.
    Bulgarian Deputy Foreign Minister Ivan Ganev, in interview with the Greek daily Elefterotypia, claimed Turkey is not allowing Moslem Bulgarian citizens to return their country. He alleged Turkish authorities were seizing the passports of these Bulgarian citizens and making them stay in concentration camps.
    Aware of the growing unrest among the immigrants, the Turkish Government has been obliged to seek a compromise with Bulgarian authorities. Recently, Turkish premier Ozal declared that his government was ready to talk about other questions with Sofia if Bulgaria agreed to discuss the situation of the ethnic Turks who have so far arrived in Turkey. This is a change in Ozal's attitude. After the present crisis began in early June, Ozal said Turkey was not ready to talk about other matters with Bulgaria until an arrangement was made about the influx of immigrants from Bulgaria.
    On the other hand, following the Turkish Government's wish, Soviet Ambassador Albert Chernishev has taken a series of initiatives in a view to restoring dialogue between Ankara and Sofia.
    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted on July 6, 1989, the following recommendation on the situation of refugees of Bulgarian nationality in Turkey:
    "The Assembly,
    "1. Alarmed by the arrival in Turkey of an increasing number of refugees of Bulgarian nationality belonging to an ethnic and Moslem minority which represents a serious problem;
    2. Hoping that a constructive dialogue may be established between Turkey and Bulgaria in order to find as rapidly as possible a solution to this problem, and appealing to Bulgaria to agree to negotiate a satisfactory immigration agreement with Turkey which will result in an end to such involuntary emigration,
    "3. Recommends that the Committee of Ministers appeal to the governments of member states so that they provide, as a matter of urgency, concrete and co-ordinated aid to Turkey in order that these exiles be accorded a decent reception corresponding to standards of human dignity."
    The Assembly also decided to send a mission to Bulgaria. The report to be drawn up by this mission will be debated at the following meeting of the Assembly in September.


    The daily Milliyet of July 10, 1989 reported that Turkey shelters for the time being about 2.5 million refugees.
    Since the Khomeiny's Islamic Revolution in 1979, more than 1 million Iranians have passed the Turco-Iranian border and demanded political asylum in Turkey.
    Also 36,000 Iraqi Kurds, 10,000 Afghan Turks have recently received by Turkey.
    Until 1978 Turkey had received 400,000 ethnic Turks from Bulgaria. Recently, the number of the ethnic Turks forced to leave Bulgaria has already reached 250,000.
    Together with those refugees who have come from Greece, Yugoslavia and Rumania, the total number of the refugees in Turkey is estimated at 2.5 million, which represents 5% of the population of Turkey. In return, about 2.5 million people from Turkey are abroad as immigrant workers or political refugees.