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


14th Year - N°160
February 1990
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


    The Sun Workshops (Les Ateliers du Soleil), founded in 1982 by Info-Türk with the aim of contributing to the defense of the rights of immigrants in Belgium and to the development of their social, cultural and educative life, organized on February 1st, 1990 an Information Day  in Brussels. On this occasion, all objects created by the Sun Workshops were exhibited to the public.
    The adherents of the Sun Workshops are composed of women, men, adolescents and children of twenty nationalities, mainly Belgian, Turkish, Kurdish, Armenian, Assyrian, Chaldean, Moroccan, Italian, Spanish, Iranian, Egyptian, Portuguese, Bolivian, Chilean, Peruvian, Mexican, Indian...
    Since a new policy of immigration, proposed by the Royal Commissionership for Immigration, was being discussed by the national and local authorities in Belgium, the adherents of the Sun Workshops, on this occasion, issued an appeal for the recognition of citizen dignity to all inhabitants of foreign origin of the city of Brussels.
    Recalling that the immigrants have effectively participated for many years in economic, social and cultural life of Belgium, the Sun Workshops declare that they already deserve an active participation in the political life of the country.
    "Even if the new policy of immigration contains some positive points, the strict application of this new policy will depend on the right of the citizens of foreign origin to censure municipal authorities by casting their votes at local elections," says the adherents of Sun Workshops.


    Adopting the proposal of the Commission, the Ministerial Council of the European Communities, at its meeting of February 5, 1990 in Brussels, closed the door on Turkey's application to join the Community until at least the mid-1990.
    The long-expected rejection of Turkey's April 1987 membership application was couched in terms of the Community's general need to finish its own single market project. Even then the EC will decide whether to start negotiation with Turkey only in the light of the overall situation in Europe, where the Community is already constructing new links with the countries of both the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and Eastern Europe.
    Beside these objective elements, the Community's refusal is also based on the economic and social backwardness of Turkey in comparison with the Member States, but particularly on Ankara's continuing disrespect for human rights.
    In fact, prior to the European Council's meeting, the Ankara regime, instead of ameliorating its human rights record, committed new scandalous violations of human rights provoking big reaction in the European opinion.
    The most scandalous among them was no doubt the insolence of the Chief Prosecutor of the State Security Court of Ankara who refused to testify before three European judges coming to Turkey in the frame of an investigation. 
    As remembered, two top officials of the United Communist Party of Turkey (TBKP), Nabi Yagci and Nihat Sargin claimed that they were drugged and physically tortured during their two-week-long questioning after their voluntary return from exile in November 1987.
    Since Turkish authorities refused to deal with the complaint, the lawyers of the two prisoners appealed to the European Human Rights Commission. The latter decided last year that Yagci and Sargin's case was eligible for review because the men had exhausted legal procedures in Turkey but had failed to get court action started against their alleged torturers.
    Three European judges, Sir Basil Howe (Britain), Stephan Prexel (Switzerland) and Albert Weitzel (Luxembourg) came to Turkey two times to talk with the concerned parties, the first in October 1989 and the second in January 1990.
    However Prosecutor Demiral refused each time to testimony, claiming that the trial of Yagci and Sargin was still continuing and Turkish law did not allow him to comment on the case before the court made a ruling.
    Three policemen who were implicated in the torture allegations by the two communist officials too refused to testify before the European judges.    
    The attitude of the chief prosecutor and three policemen has shown once more that the international conventions signed by Ankara is not at all respected even by the functionaries under the order of the government.
    On January 8, Justice Minister Oltan Sungurlu said that the government could not give instructions to judicial personnel. "We cannot force the prosecutor to talk to the European judges."
    Prof. Suat Bilge, Turkey's representative at the European Human Rights Commission, called for the punishment of State Security Court Prosecutor Demiral for harming Turkey's image abroad by refusing to appear before the judges.


    This scandal was followed the mass arrests of the members of the TBKP in January and February 1990, despite the fact that the trial of this party's two top officials was the object of a legal procedure by the European Human Rights Commission.  Moreover, the arrested party officials had announced in mid-December 1989 that they would no longer operate underground with a view to contributing to the democratization of political life in the country.
    The first public appearance of TBKP top officials in Turkey was on November 13. The Politburo members introduced themselves to the press at a cocktail party in Istanbul. It was followed on December 8, 1989 by a press conference held by the members of the TBKP Central Committee in Istanbul. At this meeting, it was announced that they were determined to come out into the daylight and conduct their activities openly and legally, whether or not the government lifts the penal code articles that have been keeping communists underground. Provincial TBKP officials too have held similar meetings in Istanbul, Izmit, Ankara and other Turkish cities.
    At the beginning police did not interfere with this meetings. However, the State Security Court showed its teeth a few weeks after, despite the fact that Ozal had announced that the freedom of opinion and organization would be respected.
    First, a total of 59 party members, 29 in Izmir and 30 in Zonguldak were arrested by police on January 8-9, 1990, respectively, after holding meetings announcing they would stop operating in secret. The number of the arrested party members reached 300 towards the end of February 1990.
    Besides, the State Security Court of Ankara arrested also Mrs. Ayse Cicek Yagci, wife of Nabi Yagci,  upon arrival in Turkey on January 6, 1990.


    Court cases against the print media in Turkey reached a record level in 1989. According to a dispatch by Anka news agency, a total of 394 cases were brought against 16 newspapers, of which 211 consisted of damage suits for invasion of privacy and 183 were penal trials filed by <the state against journalists.
    A total of 12.8 billion TL ($5.6 million) has been demanded in the damage suits, while the prison sentences requested for the nearly 400 journalists in the penal cases total more than 1,000 years. About 20 percent of the damages cases and 21 percent of the penal cases were filed by President Turgut Ozal or members of his family. Most of the cases are still pending.


    3.12, two poets, Vecihi Timuroglu and Ahmet Telli were detained by police after having participated in a festival organized by the students of the Gazi University of Ankara.
    12.12, three editors of the monthly Vatan Gunesi, Rifat Sefah, Sukran Duran and Rifat Eroglu were detained by police in Istanbul. Besides, the 4th issue of the review was confiscated as the three preceding numbers.
    13.12, in Mugla, journalist Ozcan Ozgur was sentenced to 2 months and 15 days imprisonment for having criticized a local religious official's speech. The prison term was later commuted to a fine of 38,000 TL.
    13.12, The monthly Yeni Demokrasi was confiscated for "communist and separatist propaganda".
    14.12, the monthly Yeni Cozum was confiscated for "communist propaganda".
    15.12, Yakup Karademir, responsible editor of the monthly Medya Gunesi, and two persons staying at his home were detained after a police raid.
    16.12, the State Security Court of Istanbul placed under arrest two editors of the monthly Vatan Gunesi: Sukru Duran and Rifat Eroglu.
    21.12, the editors of 14 political reviews launched a campaign for lifting Articles 141 and 142 of the Turkish Penal Code. The appeal was signed by the following reviews: Adimlar, Deng, Devrimci Mucadele, Genclik Dunyasi, Iktidar Yolu, Isci Sozu, Isciler ve Politika, Kivilcim, Sorun, Sinif Bilinci, Siyaset, Sosyalist Birlik, Toplumsal Kurtulus, Yeni Oncu.
    26.12, Okkes Remzi Göbel, Adana representative of the monthly Yeni Cozum, was sentenced by the State Security Court of Malatya to a prison term of 4 years and 2 months.
    27.12, police raided the Ankara office of the monthly Yeni Cözüm and arrested journalist Erol Ozpolat as well as 30 other people visiting the office.
    30.12, Gülten Demir, responsible editor of the monthly Devrimci Genclik was condemned by the State Security Court of Istanbul to 15 years imprisonment. Later on this prison term was commuted to a fine of 27 million TL.
    4.1, Mehmet Senol, correspondent of the weekly 2000e Dogru, was detained by police in Diyarbakir.
    4.1, Metin Yavuz, publisher of the monthly Yeni Cozum, and Ibrahim Bosnak, director of the Ilke Publishing and Distribution House, were detained in Istanbul.
    6.1, in Van, police seized 107 books to sell in a local bookshop, claiming that they were banned publications.
    11.1, the responsible editor of the monthly Hedef declared that all issues of this review had been confiscated since its first issue.
    19.1, in Konya, a high school student, E.Y., was arrested for having drawn the emblem of an outlawed Kurdish organization on the denunciation by his teacher.
    25.1, the trial of the two editors pf the weekly 2000e Dogru, Dogu Perincek and Tunca Arslan, began at the State Security Court of Istanbul. They face each prison terms of up to 15 years for having published interviews with the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan.
    30.1, famous movie star Ilyas Salman was detained by the SSC of Istanbul on the charge of having shouted "separatist slogans" during the May Day demonstrations this year in Strasbourg when he was abroad.
    31.1, the editor of the monthly Medya Gunesi, Cemal Ozcelik was sentenced by the SSC of Istanbul to 12 years and 6 months imprisonment and to a fine of 684,000 TL for "separatist propaganda."
International PEN's Report


    The Writers in Prison Committee of International PEN, in its recent report issued in September 1989, gave a detailed list of the prisoners of opinion in Turkey. We reproduce this list below:
    Kazim ARLI: born in 1953 in Espakli village in the province of Burdur. Editor-in-chief of the journal Öncü ("Vanguard", a fortnightly) between June and August 1980. For articles in issues in 3,4, and 5 (16 and 30 June and 14 July) arrested on 11.9.1985 and sentenced to 23 years 6 months by Istanbul Military Court No. 2, the verdict being announced on 27.6.1986. Conviction based on Art. 142 of the Turkish Penal Code, "making communist propaganda". Another trial is going on against him under Article 141 of the TPC, apparently for the 1st and 2nd number of Öncü of which he was editor. In August 1989, PEN learned that he was also facing trial under Article 140 of the TPC because of a letter he wrote to a PEN member which "slandered" the government and could face another five years. Address in Prison: Ozel Tip Cezaevi, C-Blok 16001, Bursa, TURKEY. Adopted by Swedish PEN and US PEN Center West.
    Irfan ASIK: B.1953, single, family live in Bolu province. School teacher and editor of a monthly political journal called Partizan until it was shut down after military coup. Arrested 4.12.1980 while teaching, tried 13 times for different publications of Partizan, sentenced to total 111 yrs, reduced on appeal to 36 yrs. With remission, probable release date 1995. His address: B-4, Ozel Cezaevi, 17100 Çanakkale, Turkey. Adopted by Belgium Flemish-speaking center.
    Güzel ARSLANER: Chief editor of a small journal called Halkin Birligi (Unity of the People). Sentenced to 31 years under Article 142 on 30.6.83 on the basis of 5 articles published in it before the 1980 coup.
    Mehmet BAYRAK: Journalist for Özgür Gelecek (A Future in Freedom), detained on 22 July 1989. (See under Bekir Resen below for details.)
    Oral CALISLAR: B. l946 in Tarsus, Turkey. Chief Editor of daily Aydinlik (Enlightenment), which was closed down in 1980. Married, one child. Imprisoned 1980-1982 while his trial continued. Arrested in 1986 after a sentence of 8 yrs was finally given. Tried under Article 141. From 1980-1986 was a member of the central committee of the Turkish Workers and Peasants Party. During his first imprisonment he wrote a book called 'Language School' which the newspaper 'Milliyet' serialized. After he wrote an article for 'Cumhuriyet' about a young boy in jail he won a prize called 'Yunus Nadi'.
    Mehmet ÇETIN: B. 1955, worked in theater, wrote plays, stories and poems. Detained after coup. Allegedly tortured in pre-trial detention. Sentenced on 1.9.1981 to 20 yrs imprisonment for "directing an illegal organization". This was apparently 5 yrs more than the legal maximum for this offence, but the extra 5 years were reportedly added on arbitrarily under martial law. Reportedly tortured on 3 occasions since his imprisonment. In prison has continued writing activities - poems and essays. Some work published in Turkey and abroad and the PEN office has his collection of poems "Season of Wind and Roses" in Turkish, two of which have been translated in English. Adopted by San Miguel Allende PEN center.
    Mehmet COBAN: Journalist for Ankara journal Iktibas (Quotation). Charged under Art. 163  for "anti-secular propaganda" for an article he wrote which appeared in Sept. 1985 issue called "Fundamentals Guiding Our Path". Sentenced to 6 years 3 months which he is serving.
    Suleyman COSKUN: A journalist, b. 1945. First arrested April 1981 for membership of the Turkish Communist Party (TKP) which has always been illegal in Turkey. After spending 3 years in pre-trial detention he was provisionally released in 1984. In March 1985 sentenced to 8 years and 10 months' imprisonment. Verdict upheld by Military Appeal Court in October 1987. In September 1988, Coskun started serving his sentence at the Haymana District Prison; he will probably have to serve 40% of the sentence.
    Ilker DEMIR: b. 1953, married, one child. Editor of the reviews Ilke and Kitle from 1975-77. Arrested 3.4.1984 in Istanbul. Convicted in a number of trials in military courts to total of 23 years and 1 month on charges of making communist propaganda. Was held in Aydin Prison, a special civilian prison, until he went on hungerstrike on 17 October 1988, then moved to Nazilli Prison which had just been built. Asthma sufferer. Went on another hungerstrike on 23 April 1989 demanding improvements in conditions and was apparently beaten by guards and injured. Sent to an isolation cell where conditions are said to be damp and airless and where the concrete dust is said to damage his health. He also suffers from a stomach ulcer. He says in a letter that he expects to be released in June 1993 (taking into account Turkey's remission laws). On 15/16 July 1989 he was again badly beaten up by guards and thrown into an isolation cell after he objected to a decision only to allow his wife, and not his only daughter, (who had both travelled hundreds of miles) to see him. Adopted by AI as a POC.
    Fettah ERKAN: Editor of Devrimci Derlenis, charged on 5.6.1981 with insulting the army by the Ankara Military Court and sentenced to 11 years and 8 months.
    Ersin Ergun KELES: b. 1960, student at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara. Arrested early July 1981 in Samsun and charged with membership of left wing organization Devrimci Yol (Revolutionary Path') at Erzincan Military Court No. 2. The trial started in 1982 with 212 defendants and with the prosecutor Nuh Mete Yuksel asking for 22 death sentences initially. On 24.1.1984 the verdict was announced, with 16 people out of now 291 given the death sentence, including Ergun. In June 1983 at the Military Appeal Court in Ankara some death sentences were confirmed but others including Ergun's were quashed. He was retried during the course of 1988 and sentenced in May to life imprisonment. Ergun, in a statement published by Cumhuriyet says he was forced to sign a 'confession' under torture and that he had never carried a weapon; though he read the journal Devrimci Yol, he did not know of an illegal organization called DEV-YOL. Ersin Ergun became a poet while in detention and his poems have been published in Turkey. On 28.10.1988, Ergun was reportedly beaten so severely by prison guards that he had to be hospitalized. His recent poems and translations were allegedly destroyed and some of his personal effects confiscated. Was moved in summer 1988 to Eskisehir Prison. He went on hungerstrike on about 29 June 1989 after the prisoners' rights had been restricted following the discovery of an escape tunnel. On 2 August 1989, Eskisehir was evacuated and Ersin Ergun was sent to Aydin Prison. On arrival, following a discussion with prison staff about necessary medical treatment, the guards beat up some of the prisoners. Two died and Ersin Ergun Keles had again to be hospitalized and was reported to be seriously injured. Later in August (about the 20th) the prisoners came off their hungerstrike as some of their demands had been granted. Adopted by the Catalan and Swedish center of PEN.
    Yasar KAPLAN: A student of English literature and editor of a literary magazine called Aylik Dergi (Monthly Review). Arrested May 1985 and charged under Art. 163 for "anti-secular propaganda" because of his work The Book of Democracy. Sentenced in February 1986 to 6 yrs and 3 months by Ankara State Security Court. Now in Bursa prison (Ozel tip E cezaevi, Bursa, Turkey). Adopted by AI.
    Celal GÜL: Teacher and contributor to political journal Ozgur Gelecek (A Future in Freedom), detained on 22 July 1989 along with Bekir Kesen. (See under Bekir Kesen below for details.)
    Bayram KAZAKLI: Owner and responsible manager of the publishing company called Devrimci Kurtulus Yayinevi. Sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment for publishing 4 books and booklets and being a member of an illegal organization. Kazakli admitted publishing the books but denied being a "militant" and claimed to have been tortured. Arrested in 1983.
    Bekir KESEN: Chief editor of Ozgur Gelecek (A Future in Freedom, a monthly political journal) which concentrated on Kurdish issues, which had started being published in December 1988 with nearly all issues being confiscated. He and Mehmet Bayrak, the owner of the journal, and Celal Gul, a teacher and contributor are all facing charges of 'membership of a separatist organization' under articles 141/4 of the Turkish Penal Code. Kesen and Celal Gul, a teacher and contributor to the magazine who spent 30 months in prison in the early 1980s, were both arrested at the journal's office on 22 July l989 and taken to Ankara Police Headquarters where they are being investigated. That evening Mehmet Bayrak was arrested and a medical doctor called Nuray Özkan (female), who had written a report for the journal on a women's conference at which the situation of Kurdish women had been discussed, were also arrested. Their homes were searched. On 1st August Bekir Kesen, Celal Gul and and Mehmet Bayrak appeared at Ankara State Security Court and were formally charged and are now held in Ankara Closed Prison awaiting trial which is due to begin in September 1989. Kesen and Bayrak are meanwhile already being charged with "making separatist propaganda" (142/3) for previous articles in the journal. They were arrested after 2nd issue came out in which an article Bayrak wrote entitled "Nazim Hikmet's 87th birthday" appeared. The same article had previously appeared in May 1988 in the weekly 2000e Dogru and had on that occasion given rise to court proceedings where the 2000e Dogru editor was finally acquitted in Istanbul. This verdict was, however, disregarded by the Prosecutor in Ankara in Bayrak and Kesen's case. Reportedly badly beaten up in Ankara Closed Prison. They were freed on bail in March 1989.
    Recep MARASLI: B. 1956 in Erzurum, single. A publisher, owner of Komal Publishing House in Istanbul. First arrested 1978-79 for publishing activities. Komal published books on Kurdish history, culture and the situation of Kurds in general. He is himself a Kurd. Published books by Ismail Besikci (now free). Arrested January 1982 and tried 6 times: another trial is pending. Total sentence is 36 years which he first served in Diyarbakir Military Prison, Diyarbakir. English PEN had two cards from him in late 1987. In November 1988, PEN heard that he was unwell and had been moved to Eskisehir prison. English PEN member had letter from him dated 2.1.89 from Eskisehir saying he had suffered a stroke in 1984 and was still being denied full treatment. French Canadian PEN member visited him in February 1989 and found him weak as he had gone on another hungerstrike. On 2 August 1989, Eskisehir was evacuated seemingly as an attempt to break up a hungerstrike that some 320 prisoners were on (see under Ersin Ergun Keles above for details). He is now in Aydin Prison. Adopted by AI and Norwegian, English, Canadian and Belgian French-speaking centers.
    Orhan ÖRÜCÜ: Owner of publishing house called Simge (Symbol) arrested on 20 January 1989 and held in police custody in Ankara. Simge had been in the process of printing a book which contained the defence speeches of the DEV-YOL (Revolutionary Path) defendants; apparently the book made no comments on the speeches at all and the speeches had already been reported in the press. The book was confiscated while it was still unbound and in the middle of a print run. The compiler of the book, Osman Tayfun Mater, presented himself to the authorities in Ankara on 24 January 1989 and was immediately formally arrested and charged under Article 142/1, 3-6 (communist and separatist propaganda); he is now being held in Ankara Closed Prison.
    Candemir ÖZLER: b. 19.2.1957. Arrested 1 May 1981 for articles appearing in Savas Yolu of which he was editor. Charged under Art. 142 for 'communist propaganda'. Sentenced to 23 yrs 10 months' imprisonment. In Çanakkale Prison. Adopted by AI.
    Alaattin SAHIN: b.c. 1948, editor of the weekly Halkin Yolu from January to November 1977. 44 cases were opened against him. In 25 cases he received a total of 108 yrs, commuted to 36 yrs. About 19 cases remaining. In Çanakkale Prison.
    Orhan SELEN: b.c. 1953, married, three children; a poet who has had 4 volumes published including Children of the Sun in 1977 by Ileri Publishing House. Arrested in July 1985, a year after his 8-yr sentence was confirmed. Charged with 'attempting to establish the domination of one social class over other social classes' under Article 141/1. Charges preferred after an article proposing that a legal communist party in Turkey be allowed was published in Katki (Contribution). Seven authors including Selen were involved. Address: E-tipi cezaevi, D-4, Bursa, Turkey. Adopted by AI.
    Erhan TUSKAN: b. 1957 in Denizli. Responsible Editor of Ilerici Yurtsever Genclik, the journal of the Progressive Youth Organization (IGD). Arrested on 24.10.1980 after military takeover of 1980 in connection with four articles that appeared in the journal. Erhan TUSKAN has apparently himself written articles criticizing terrorism, though it is not clear whether he himself wrote the articles on which his sentence was based. Sentenced to 48 yrs 10 months in prison reduced to 36 yrs on appeal. Detained in Çanakkale prison. Adopted by AI and by Irish PEN.
    Hasan Fikret ULUSOYDAN: b. 1955, on trial since 1976. For 9 months in 75-76 editor-in-chief of the periodical Halkin Sesi (People's Voice). 23 different charges made against him for various articles which appeared at this time under Art 142, "making communist propaganda", and Art. 159, "insulting the State authorities". Total of sentences is 75 years, two of which have not yet been finalized. Ulusoydan will serve the maximum 36 years' imprisonment. Detained 25 March 1980 to 5 July 1980 and re-arrested on 17 November 1980 and held until 1988 in Metris Military Prison. Halkin Sesi was published legally in the 1970s and was affiliated to a group called Aydinlik (Enlightenment) which later formed the basis for the Workers' and Peasants' Party of Turkey (TIKP) which was banned in 1980 with many of its members be given heavy sentences. On 30 September 1988, Ulusoydan was beaten up by his prison guards and was treated in hospital for two days suffering from internal bleeding. Later a hunger strike was declared in the prison and 60 prisoners, said to be the leaders of the strike, were removed to Çanakkale Prison including Ulusoydan. On 3 August 1989 went on hungerstrike for about two weeks in protest at the death of two prisoners in Aydin prison. Affianced to Fatma Yazici (see below) Adopted by a English AI center. (Address: E Tipi Cezaevi C-4, Çanakkale, TURKEY).
    Mecit ÜNAL: Poet published in many Turkish magazines and has published an interview with Nevzat Çelik in Yeni Demokrasi (New Democracy) Arrested November 1980, trial still in progress, charged under Art. 141 & 142. First held in Bayrampasa prison and then moved to a prison in Zonguldak. Apparently has had visiting rights forfeited. Adopted by West German PEN.


    Nurettin ÖZTÜRK: Responsible editor of the political review Kurtulus, who lived for years as a political exile in Switzerland. Returned to Turkey at the end of 1983 and was immediately arrested along with one other person. Since then his family and friends have heard nothing. His mother thinks he may have been killed in police custody. Case reported in 21 April 1988 Cumhuriyet.

Investigation Case

    Hasan Selim AÇAN: Responsible editor for Halkin Kurtulusu, sentenced to total of 331 years with other trials outstanding; presumably commuted to 36 years. Reported in prison by Milliyet in May 1989 and by official Turkish source. Still in Çanakkale June 1989.
    Ibrahim AÇAN: Arrested on January 18, 1989, a 71 year old retired colonel turned lawyer. He had brought out a book containing the defence speeches of the Revolutionary Peasants and Laborers Union of Turkey.
    Felemez AK: Editor of monthly Toplumsal Kurtulus arrested sometime before October 8, 1988 and still detained.
    Fuat AKYÜREK: Editor for Saglikcinin Sesi sentenced to 10 years 6 months' imprisonment for printing five issues (the magazine was about health issues). Released in April 1988. Rearrested in early 1989 and held in Sagmalcilar Ozel tip cezaevi, Bayrampasa, Istanbul. Trial apparently to open on 12 April 1989 and he is accused of organizing "illegal press" and being a director of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Turkey (TDKP).
    Ibrahim ARIK: Editor of Savas Yolu, sentenced to 15 years by Izmir Military Court on 16.10.1982.
    Ahmet Cevdet ASKIN: Wrote to an AI member of staff saying that he had translated two books into Turkish about Latin America and was about to translate a third. Says he is a political prisoner who has been in prison for more than 8 years. In Çanakkale Prison (Kogus C-l) and he apparently protested at wearing of prison uniform at his court hearings and was for one month in 1988 not allowed to receive mail.
    Erdal ÇAYIR: Journalist of political magazine called Yeni Çözüm (New Solution): detained on 9 November 1988 for being a member of the illegal organization Devrimci Sol (Revolutionary Left). On 22 November formally arrested. On 14 November apparently cut his wrists. A reporter for 2000e Dogru says that he was tortured before his formal arrest and witnessed the torture of other detainees. Çayir apparently finally made a confession.
    Mehmet CERIT: Editor of periodical Halkin Yolu. Sentenced at Istanbul Military Court on 22.4.1981 to 18 years and 11 months.
    Mete DALGIN: Responsible editor of journal Halkin Birligi, total sentence of 30 years' imprisonment.
    Mustafa DUM: Responsible editor of Ileri newspaper. Sentenced to 13 years 6 months imprisonment. Sentence ratified. Serving in Çanakkale E type Prison.
    Mustafa EKER: Responsible editor of Kurtulus Sosyalist Dergi, sentenced to 13 years and 5 months' imprisonment, possibly more. Imprisoned in Istanbul.
    Bektas ERDOGAN: b. 1954, a non-practising Moslem from Merzifon in Eastern Anatolia who lived and worked in Istanbul. Editor of a newspaper before arrest. Studied medicine and then linguistics at University. Imprisoned in 1979 and sentenced to 36 yrs imprisonment. Address: E tipi Cezaevi, 17100 Çanakkale, TURKEY. Honorary member of English Center of PEN.
    Mehmet Resat GÜVENILIR: Editor of Emegin Birligi, monthly periodical of a Marxist-Leninist party. Student of journalism when arrested. Also member of DEV-YOL. Family comes from Gaziantep (has four brothers, both parents alive). Married; his wife lives in Istanbul and visits him two or three times a year. Apparently received 10 years in April 1984 at Adana Military Court for membership of the  Communist Labour Party of Turkey (TKEP) and Devrimci Yol (Revolutionary Path). Prison address: Ozel tip Cezaevi, C-4 Ceyhan/Adana.
    Nurettin KARAKOÇ: a journalist, owner of the political magazine Hedef (Target). He was detained at the end of November 1988 with 17 others and was one of 12 who were formally arrested and committed to prison on charges of membership of the illegal organization TKP-B (Turkish Communist Party/Unity), on 13 December 1988.
    Remzi KÜÇÜKERTAN: Editor with Devrimci Proletarya serving 7 years and 6 months; still in prison in May 1988 according to Cumhuriyet of October 1988.
    Reha MADEN and his wife Aysegul Maden: Reha Maden, a journalist working for the semi-official news agency Anadolu Ajansi was arrested on 19 November 1988 and taken into police custody where there were fears of torture. His wife Aysegul was also detained on 24 or 25 November. On 29 November the Turkish daily Günes reported that their detention was linked to their membership of the illegal Turkish Communist Party/Unity (TKP-B). That week they and 14 others were taken to Ankara State Security Court; 4 were released but 12 including the Maden were committed to prison. The Maden are apparently accused of sheltering wanted political activists suspected of planning assassinations.
    Ertugrul MAVIOGLU: Journalist with Yeni Çözüm (New Solution). Sentenced in September 1988 to three years for communist propaganda.
    Hatice ONAT: Worked for political journal called Emegin Bayragi (Flag of Labour); arrested along with Nadir Nadi Usta - see below for details.
    Cemal ÖZÇELIK: Journalist with Medya Gunesi convicted in August 1988 for making communist propaganda, unclear what his sentence was.
    Haci Ali ÖZER: Editor with Emegin Birligi, still in prison in May 1988 according to October Cumhuriyet, but sentence unknown. Nothing more heard of him since.
    Mehmet OZGEN: b.c. 1954, editor of Bagimsiz Türkiye and Devrimci Militan journals. 6 court cases prepared against him and sentenced finally came to 33 yrs 6 months. In Çanakkale prison.
    Ali RABUS: Editor of Birlik Yolu journal sentenced to 18 yrs' imprisonment. In Çanakkale prison.
    Abdullah SOYDAN: Owner of monthly magazine called Kawa of which only 7 issues published from September 1978 to March 1979 in Istanbul; paper apparently argued for the cause of Kurdistan and protecting the Kurds' human rights in Turkey. Sentenced to a total of 50 years probably under Article 142. Married with 3 children. First address was Ozel E Tipi Cezaevi, 16 Kogus, Aydin, Turkey, but then an official source suggested he had been moved to Nazilli prison.
    Osman TAS: b. 1957, editor of Halkin Kurtulusu sentenced to a total of 215 years of which 155 years ratified. Arrested 13.1.1981. Sentence automatically commuted to 36 years.
    Hasan USAK: Managing Editor of Toplumsal Dirilis a monthly newspaper on Kurdish cultural issues. Arrested along with its owner (see Cemal Yalvaç below) in November 1988 and apparently then formally arrested and held at Sagmalcilar Cezaevi, Bayrampasa, Istanbul.
    Nadir Nadi USTA: Editor-in-chief of a political magazine Yeni Asama (New Period). Arrested with Hatice Onat, above, and 3 other journalists on 17.9.1988 and held at Ankara Police Headquarters after attempting to lay a black wreath in front of the Iraqi Embassy. On 30 September they were formally arrested by Ankara State Security Court and taken to Ankara Closed Prison. Exact charges not known. The detainees told their lawyers that they were tortured during their incommunicado detention with beatings, electric shocks and ice cold water.
    Esber YAGMURDERELI: b. 1945, blind since he was 10 years old. Lawyer by profession, graduated in law and philosophy. Also was editor of magazine called Yeni Eylem which was founded in 1968. Also writes short stories (one of which won a nationwide competition in 1986, unclear which) and continues his writing career in prison. Also has reportedly edited many magazines and written articles on law, literature and politics in last 20 years. Arrested March 5, 1978; was sentenced to death but this was commuted to life imprisonment (= 36 years). Apparently will have to serve 6 more years unless released earlier and if his sentence is not increased - he apparently has another case pending. Unclear yet precisely why sentenced, though reportedly accused of organizing clandestine activities. Was apparently badly tortured during his interrogation.
    Cemal YALVAÇ: Owner of Toplumsal Dirilis a monthly newspaper on Kurdish cultural issues. Arrested along with its managing editor (see Hasan Usak above) in November 1988 and apparently then formally arrested and held at Sagmalcilar Cezaevi, Bayrampasa, Istanbul. Yalvaç and Usak are both Kurds. Their office was apparently raided with extensive damage at the time of their arrest.
    Ali Haydar YILDIRIM: b. 1951. Responsible editor of five issues of periodical Militan Genclik, acquitted in two cases of five opened against him. Sentenced to a total of 14 years 6 months. Arrested in 1981. Graduate of Çapa Medical Faculty. Married, one child.
    Veli YILMAZ: b. 1954, editor of Halkin Kurtulusu and Halkin Kurtulusu Yolunda Genclik, sentenced to a total of 1,170 years of which 750 ratified. All sentences of such length are automatically commuted to 36 years.
    Mustafa ZÜLKADIROGLU: Director of Emek Publishing House, put into prison on 24 November 1988 to serve a 6 year and 3 month sentence which he received in 1977 for a pamphlet he published on May Day.

Facing Charges

    Erbil TUSALP: Journalist for Cumhuriyet based in Ankara. Arrested 21.6.1988 after the paper published details of the testimony made by the suspect held in connection with the assassination attempt made on Prime Minister Turgut Özal. Released at some date (unknown) afterwards but on 23 November 1988 he was indicted by the prosecutor of the State Security Court of Istanbul for having revealed the deposition of the alleged author of the attempt on Turgut Özal's life.
    Kerim KORCAN: b. 1918, novelist brought before State Security Court of Istanbul accused of communist propaganda in his novel Bridge of Fire which talks about torture in Turkey 30 years ago. His publisher, Rabia Sen Süer, is also facing charges.
    Ismail BESIKÇI: Sociologist and writer, previously imprisoned for ten years for his academic books on the Kurdish question. Recently indicted for an interview on the Kurds which he gave to the review Gelecek. On March 10 1989 his trial opened at the Ankara State Security Court. Faces 5 years.
    Zeki ÖZTÜRK: Editor of Sorun Publishing House indicted by Istanbul State Security Court for communist propaganda. Faces a prison term of up to 15 years.

Arrested mid June 1988, all free pending outcome of trial:

     The following were arrested from their homes and brought to a place called "DAL" ('Deep Investigation Laboratory') in Ankara, questioned, and charged a few days later under Section 142. 3-6 of TPC with 'making communist and Kurdish propaganda for their work on the one year old paper Toplumsal Kurtulus (Socialist Liberation) which dealt with Kurdish issues. All are currently on trial (trial opened on August 18 1988) and the prosecution has asked for a total of 250 years for 15 articles in the paper.

Free pending outcome of trial

    Orhan GÖKDEMIR: Chief Editor of Toplumsal Kurtulus and as such held responsible for four articles that appeared in it mentioned in the cases below.
    Dr. Yalçin KÜÇÜK: prominent author of many books, contributor to Toplumsal Kurtulus. Former lecturer, imprisoned for 10 months '83-84 for his book For a New Republic. Present indictment reportedly due to an interview with Kurdistan Press, published in Sweden, which was reprinted in the journal. Also held for two days in April 1989 for numbers 19 and 20 of the journal. (See Ilhan Akalin above for details.)
    Hüsnü ÖNDÜL: lawyer and contributor to Toplumsal Kurtulus. Acts as defence counsel in many political trials and executive committee member of the Ankara branch of the recently founded Human Rights Association. Indicted for an article he wrote in the February issue of the journal about South East Turkey where most of the Kurdish population lives.
    Ilhan AKALIN: Chief editor of political journal Toplumsal Kurtulus (Social Liberation) held in incommunicado police detention in isolation between 12 and 24 April at Ankara Police Headquarters along with Dr Yalçin Küçük who was released 14 April. Küçük said that interrogation had concentrated on the most recent numbers (19 and 20) of Toplumsal Kurtulus. Akalin was also detained between 14 June and 15 September 1988 for spreading communist and separatist propaganda in two unsigned articles appearing in the journal, one about the setting up of the Kurdish PEN center. The trial proceedings for this separate charge are continuing. (See under Yalçin Küçük below for details of these.)
    Bilgesu ERENUS: (female, playwright and owner of the socialist monthly Toplumsal Kurtulus (Socialist Liberation): released from detention on 23rd June after being held for 10 days.

Sentenced but not yet imprisoned

    Fatma YAZICI: Responsible editor of 2000e Dogru (Towards 2,000) until February 1989. While editor, a total of 46 charges brought against her, most under Article 142 (3) for separatist propaganda. So far acquitted in 10 cases, convicted in three: condemned to 16 months of imprisonment on 5.5.88 because of a cover story entitled Kenanizm: The philosophy of the September 12 regime published 4.10.1987; the court decreed that the story had been disrespectful to the president; 12 months for "weakening religious feelings" in an article about the sexual life of Mohamed; and 6 years and 3 months for separatist propaganda, for publishing the Helsinki Watch Committee report on the Kurds. These have been confirmed by the appeal court and thus she could be imprisoned at any moment. Her address: 2000e Dogru, Basmusahip Sok. no: 16, Talas Han, Kat 4, Cagaloglu-Istanbul. She has been adopted by the Canadian (English-speaking) and English center. Apparently, one of her sentences was ratified in February 1989 and she went into hiding to avoid imprisonment.
    Emin GÖKER: Journalist for 2000e Dogru condemned to imprisonment along with Fatma Yazici above.

Other Investigation Cases:

    The following people have probably been freed but the Committee has received no confirmation:
    Ferhat AKDAY: 8 yrs, 6 months; Zeki ATAS: 7 yrs, 6 months; Nurettin BAYDAR : 6 years; Saban BILGIN: 8 yrs 6 months; Yilmaz DINÇBERK : 7 yrs 6 months; Ali DUMAN : 7 yrs 6 months; Baki Karakol Ulviye KAYSERILIOGLU : 6 yrs; Haluk Seçkin MERIÇ: 7 yrs 6 months; Riza OLGUN: 7 yrs 6 months; Mehmet ÖZDENUR : 5 years; Abdurrahman PALA: 1 year; Orhan SENYÜZ: 7 yrs 6 months; Necdet SEVINÇ: 1 year; Orhan TAGI: 7 yrs 6 months; Ali Riza TURA: 7 yrs 6 months; Fatih YILDIZ: 4 yrs 2 months.


    Nevzat AÇAN: Released from prison according to Milliyet article; Mustafa ÇOLAK: Released in early 1989; Ersan SARIKAYA: Released from prison according to Milliyet article; Muhittin GÖKTAS: Released from prison according to Milliyet article; Mustafa TÜTÜNCÜBASI: Released from prison according to Milliyet article.


    Abdülkadir KONUK: Novelist, escaped from prison (precise date unclear) and now living in RFA.

    (For further information concerning this list, our readers can write to the following address: International Pen - Writers in Prison Committee - 38 King Street, London WC2E 8JT - GREAT BRITAIN, tel: 01-379-6353.)


    A German sociologist working in the southeast of Turkey was arrested and tried because she wrote what have been described as "separatist slogans" in the visitors' book at the Birecik Bald Ibis Breeding Station.
    A warrant for the arrest of the sociologist, a member of the faculty of Sorbonne University in Paris, was issued last month when she wrote "Bald Ibises, I love you" and "Long live the soil of Kurdistan, long live freedom," in the log book at Birecik Bald Ibis Breeding Station.
    Schlumberger was charged with violating article 142, paragraph 3, of the Turkish Penal Code by disseminating propaganda which could destroy or damage nationalist sentiments.
    Dr. Hella Schlumberger's arrest provoked a warning from West German Foreign Minister Hans Dietrich Gencher to State Minister Ali Bozer that German-Turkish relations could be damaged by the affair.
    On this intervention, she was released at the trial on January 23.


    A British journalist was first ordered on January 4, 1990,  to leave Turkey within 24 hours. Mr. Christopher Wildig, who has lived and worked in Turkey since 1969, is employed by The Press Digest, a daily news service that provides a translated review of the Turkish press for embassies and foreign business. It was unofficially reported that the Interior Ministry had refused to renew his residence permit for "being a Jehovah's Witness and spreading Christian propaganda."
    As the result of more than 40 court cases, most within the past 20 years, Jehovah's Witnesses have been accorded legal status in Turkey as a cemaat (fellowship group), and as such are allowed to meet freely, publish materials, rent and buy property and propagate their religion.
    The next day, the order to leave Turkey was reversed by the Interior Ministry, bowing to pressure exerted by both the Foreign Ministry and the Press and Information Directorate.


    The perpetrator of the first campaign against compulsory military service in Turkey, Tayfun Gönül was interrogated on January 22, 1990, by the State Security Court of Istanbul, because of an article he wrote in the weekly magazine Sokak and an interview with him published in the daily Günes. According to the prosecutor, the articles discouraged the public from doing military service, and also included expressions derogatory to the nation's armed forces. Both publications were confiscated by the order of the court. Article 155 of the Turkish Penal Code stipulates the condemnation of any propaganda against military service.


    The Constitutional Court ruled that a man found guilty of rape, sexual harassment or abduction of a prostitute would be punished two thirds less than punishment prescribed for the same offenses committed against non-prostitutes.
    The decision has provoked a series of protests by the human right groups.
    A women's group who started last year the campaign "The Body is Ours, No to Sexual Harassment", at a press conference held on January 15, 1990 in Istanbul, protested the decision in following terms:
    "The decision of the supreme court -which consists only of men- showed that male domination take precedence over all laws. Due to this ruling which legalized discrimination between chaste and unchaste women, and which is supposedly aimed at protecting chaste women from attacks, if any women is subjected to rape, then she has to prove that she is a chaste woman, not a prostitute. Any attacker, on the other hand, may claim that his victim looks like a prostitute to prove that he is not guilty."
    The declaration  also pointed out that prostitution is a legal profession in Turkey, and that prostitutes pay taxes like any other workers so they should be covered by the security of the state. Through this law, however, prostitutes are punished by the state."
    On the other hand, brochures signed by "Istanbullite prostitutes" were distributed, which read, "We protest this law. We are the ones who pay the highest taxes to the state. We are already faced with discrimination, and we regret that the discrimination is supported by the state's own hand."
    A signature campaign begun same day in Istanbul by artists was to continue for a month and to be sent to Parliament and the Foundation for Advancement of Turkish Women.


    Following a series of expulsions and resignations from the Social Democrat Populist Party (SHP), the party congress, held on January 26-27, 1990 in Ankara, consolidated Secretary General Deniz Baykal's position in the party. Baykal emerged from this congress as the party's strongman with the election of 39 of his supporters to the 44-member party assembly. This body which supervises the functioning of the central executive committee, is the most authoritative party organ after the congress.
    Another particularity of this congress was that a quota of 25 percent for women in all administrative boards of the SHP was accepted by both factions, a system which is the first of its kind in Turkish political life. So, 11 members of SHP's powerful 44-person Party Assembly are now women. Accordingly, 25 percent of all SHP provincial bodies  will have to be women.
    Although Erdal Inönü was reelected to the party chairmanship, obtaining 756 votes out of 863, he was unable to get his candidates elected to the party assembly. Before the congress Inonu proposed 19 candidates to Baykal to be placed on the list of the party assembly, but during the election Inönü's candidates were crossed off the list to be replaced by those known for their affiliation with the secretary general.
    Political observers in Ankara shared the view that Inönü's authority in SHP had been somewhat shaken with the SHP administration taken over by Baykal. "Inönü will be a symbolic leader just as the king of Sweden," said Kemal Anadol, a former SHP deputy who resigned from the party last year along with some other left-wing deputies.
    The spokesman of the other left-wing deputies who remained in the party, Ertugrul Günay criticized the secretary general for splitting the party into different factions. "We must stop the fighting in the party and join our forces. We must set up a party administration which would cover the entire party in a balanced way," said Günay who is leading the left-wing group in the SHP calling itself "The Renovators."
    Despite his scathing attack on Baykal, Günay became one of the five SHP members who managed to get elected as a member of the party assembly.
    After the congress, Günay denied allegations that SHP had become a party without a left and without a policy on southeastern Anatolia, with regard to the citizens of Kurdish origin that live there. "SHP has a policy on the Southeast," Günay maintained, " although it can be said that the party failed to spread its solutions to the masses. A new dimension of giving weight to change economic, political and social structures (in the Southeast) must be added to this policy."
    As for the former SHP deputies who were expelled or resigned from the party, they have been carrying on their talks with other left-wing groups in a view to create a new socialist party.


    The week-long 15th Congress of the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions (TURK-IS), held on December 11-16, 1989 in Ankara, ended in favour of the right-wing delegates headed by Chairman Sevket Yilmaz.
    Of some 420 delegates, representing 1,800,000 members from 32 unions affiliated with TURK-IS, 231 voted for Sevket Yilmaz while Orhan Balaban, candidate of the left-wing trade unionists, was receiving 173 votes.
    The Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions of Turkey (DISK) has been banned since the military coup of 1980 and the trial of its leaders are still pending at the Military Court of Cassation.
    Although a part of the former progressive unionists have been striving for the conclusion of this trial and the reopening of the DISK, many others have already taken part in the trade unions affiliated with TURK-IS and constituted the left wing of this oldest labour confederation.
    Chairman Sevket Yilmaz who have been accused by left-wing unionists of being too friendly with the government and the employers, defended himself from this charge by claiming he had struggled with the government on every level. "The government has burdened large sections of the population with unbearable economic difficulties," he said.
    During the congress, State Minister Isin Celebi was booed and forced to cut short his speech by delegates. In contrast, opposition leaders were given a hearty ovation.


    Turkey and Greece have come one again to the verge of a diplomatic confrontation because of a sudden flare-up of incidents between Greek authorities and Turkish minority representatives in Western Thrace.   
    The events began on January 26, 1990,  when two Turkish minority candidates who were barred from the November 5, 1989 elections to the Greek Parliament, were sentenced bu a Greek court to 18 months imprisonment each. They were accused of causing enmity among the population by spreading false information and inciting violence.
    On January 29, the Turkish minority in Komotini decided to hold mass prayers in protest against the Greek Government's pressure on Moslems. Before prayers began, ethnic Turks walking toward the mosque were confronted by Greeks and several people were beaten up. Although minority leaders called off the prayers incidents continued. Thirty people were injured and some 400 shops and offices owned by members of the Turkish community were damaged.
    Two of the injured Turks, Ahmet Faikoglu, a former deputy of the PASOK, and Emin Aga, the mufti of Ksanthi, another town in the area where the Turkish minority lives, were taken to hospital in Alexandropoulis.
    On January 31, Maria Damanaki, a member of the Greek Parliament, and those accompanying her, were mobbed in Komotini when she showed compassion for the Turks. Damanaki had to seek refuge in the municipality building and was unable to leave for two hours.
    The condemnation of Dr. Sadik Ahmet and Ibrahim Serif has been qualified by The Turkish Government as "a violation of fundamental human rights such as fair and public hearing by an impartial tribunal, the right of a person to defend himself in person or through legal assistance, with an interpreter if he cannot speak the language used in the court, and the right to freedom of expression. "The organized violence which has pursued the trial has violated many more basic principles, starting with the right of a person to security," said the Turkish Foreign Minister.
    As for the Greek Government, it claimed that Ahmed and Serif were two Greek nationals punished by a Greek court because they were trying to disturb social peace in Greece.
    Since 1985, when he was first arrested because of he was collecting signatures from members of the Turkish ethnic minority for a petition which listed restrictions on minority rights, Ahmet has been at odds with the Greek government.
    Ahmet was elected to Parliament during the June 18, 1989 elections but was not allowed to run on November 5 when local electoral offices claimed his documents were incomplete.
    Throughout the trial people in the courtroom verbally abused the defendants, telling them to leave Greece and go to Turkey.
    As Ahmet was being taken to prison after the trial he shouted: "I am being taken to prison just because I am a Turk. If being a Turk is a crime I repeat here: I am a Turk and I will remain so. My message to the minority in Western Thrace is that they should not forget they are Turks."
    Turgut Kazan, chairman of the Istanbul Bar Association, who was in Komotini attending the trial, said afterward he witnessed "a said episode in the name of justice."
    Kazan has been one of the ardent defenders of Turkish-Greek friendship and has taken part in all moves aimed at putting an end to the tension between the two neighbour countries.
    Kazan also criticized Greek human rights circles of not having reacted against the Komotini trial and the pressure on the Turkish minority in Greece.


    The longstanding water dispute came to a head on January 13, 1990, when Turkey began to restrict water flow to Syria and Iraq during the month-long filling of the newly completed Atatürk Dam.
     Turkey is the source country for both the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, and Turkish, Syrian and Iraqi officials meet regularly to discuss the usage of the waters. The giant Atatürk Dam is the third dam on the Euphrates, which crosses Syria before flowing into Iraq and continuing to the Persian Gulf. The Tigris river runs through Iraqi territory.
    Recent reports in the West German and Arabic press have suggested that if Turkey intends to use the water as a political tool against neighbouring countries it could lead to a war in the region.
    In a speech made at opening ceremonies of the Atatürk Dam in Urfa on January 13, which also marked the beginning of the month-long water cut, President Ozal said Turkey has no plans to use the water of the Euphrates as a threat against its neighbours.
    "What is important is that other countries do not interfere in our domestic affairs," Ozal said, in what was thought to be a comment directed at the Syrian Government for its alleged support of Kurdish guerrillas who are carrying out attacks along Turkey's border with Syria.
    State Minister Kamran Inan, who is in charge of the Southeast Anatolia Project (GAP), told the press that Turkey is preparing itself for the next century through various projects and added: "GAP is one of the cornerstones of this stage. In the coming century, Turkey will be among the four world superpowers, along with Japan in the Far East, West Germany in Europe and the United States in the Americas."
    Despite official claims that water will not be used as a weapon, some Western diplomats maintain that Turkey's relations with its southern neighbours, especially with Syria, are based on balanced threats rather than on balanced mutual interests. "Turkey's possible use of water as a political weapon would be countered by Syria's alleged support of Kurdish guerrillas," they said. What is more, State Minister Inan told the daily Cumhuriyet that Turkey must take into account the Syrian missiles when talking about the water problem.