of the 20 October 1991 Elections
ERA OF COALITIONS
o Electors put an end to Özal's one-party ANAP power
o Demirel's DYP
obtained highest vote, but fell short of forming a single-handed
social-democrats failed to be the leading political force
o Kurdish national
movement emerged as a political force in the East
rising menaces process of democratization
As already expected, the October 20 elections have
put an end to the 8-year power of Özal and his Motherland Party (ANAP)
and Turkey has entered, after a 11-year interval, into the period of
"coalition governments". In his first post-electoral interview in the
daily Hürriyet of October 22 said "My era has ended."
Although Özal and his party were severely punished
by the electorate, none of the other five running parties arrived to
obtain 226-seat majority to run the country with a homogeneous
government. So Turkey faces a new period of political instability and
further steps in the way of democratization remain dependent on the
composition of future coalitions.
The left-wing parties which seem more committed to
adopt international norms of democracy failed to gain over the
confidence of the majority because of their internal quarrels.
They together received only 31,94% of the votes and obtained only 95
seats in Parliament, while they had obtained 33.34% of the votes
and 99 seats in 1987 elections.
The main opposition party, the Social Democrat
Populist Party (SHP) of Erdal Inönü received 20.75%% of the votes
and obtained only 88 seats in Parliament , while it had obtained
24.81% of the votes and 99 seats in 1987 elections.
The other social democrat party, the Democratic Left
Party (DSP) of Bülent Ecevit raised its votes to 10.75% from 8.53% in
1987, but obtained only 7 seats in Parliament As for
the Socialist Party (SP) which participated in elections for the first
time, it obtained only 0.44% of the votes.
A study published by the daily Cumhuriyet of 24
October shows that if the SHP and the DSP participated in the elections
with a common list, they would have obtained 190 deputies in Parliament
and could easily put in practice their commitments in the field of
The future Parliament will, as in the past, be
dominated by the right-wing parties which have contradictory attitudes
as regards human rights. They together received 67.92% of the votes.
The new leading party of the Right is the Correct
Way Party (DYP) of Süleyman Demirel which raised its votes to 27.03%
and the number of seats to 178 while they were respectively 19.15% and
59 in 1987 elections.
The loser in the Right isthe Motherland Party
(ANAP). The electorate pulled down its score from 36.29% in 1987 to
24.01% and the number of its seats in Parliament from 292 in 1987 to
115. Despite this fall, the ANAP holds the second rank in Parliament
and becomes the main opposition party by replacing the SHP.
As the DYP was attracting votes from rural areas and
small towns, the ANAP managed to maintain its leading position in big
cities such as Istanbul and Ankara.
Seats 91 Seats
Rate of Participation 83.92%
VALID VOTES 24,416,526
(39.56%) 59 (13.11%) +119
(-12.28%) 115 (25.56%) 292
(+6.04%) 62 (13.78%)
TOTAL RIGHT 16,584,575 (67.92%)
15,885,711 (66.28%) +698,864
(+1.64%) 355 (78.88%) 351
(19.56%) 99 (22.00%) -11
(1.56%) 0 +7
TOTAL LEFT 7,799,230 (31.94%)
7,989,217 (33.34%) -189,987
(-1.40%) 95 (21.12%) 99
INDEPENDENTS 32,721 (0.14%)
-53,903 (-0.24%) 0
ALARMING RISE OF EXTREME-RIGHT
The most alarming result of this election is no
doubt the rise of the extreme right especially in Central Anatolian
The Welfare Party (RP) of Necmeddin Erbakan,
fundamentalist, thanks to its alliance with two other extreme-right
parties, surged to fourth place with 16.88% of the votes and 62 seats
in Parliament. The total score of these three parties in 1987 election
was 10.84% and they had no deputy in Parliament.
The Nationalist Labour Party (MCP) of Türkes,
neo-fascist, and the Reformist Democracy Party (IDP) of Aykut Edibali,
fundamentalist, had to give up participating in elections with
their own tickets because of the 10% national and 20 or 25% provincial
barrages for being represented in Parliament. Considering the fact that
in1987 elections the MCP had obtained 2.9% and the IDP 0.8% of the
votes, the leaders of these two parties became candidates in RP lists.
The percentages obtained by this alliance in the
following provinces show that the extreme-right has become the leading
political force of many Central Anatolian provinces:
Konya (1): 39.89%
Konya (2): 27.25%
Konya (3): 26.60%
Erzurum (2): 36.19%
Kahramanmaras (1): 35.19%
Kahramanmaras (2): 33.52%
Kayseri (1): 31.49%
Kayseri (2): 31.66%
Of 62 deputies of the Alliance, 40 belong to the RP,
20 to the MCP and 2 to the IDP. The unfairness of
the system is so evident that the neo-fascist MCP of which the share in
the national vote is estimated at 3% in maximum gained 20 seats
in Parliament as the DSP's seats were remaining at 7 although its votes
passed over 10 percent.
Both the RP and the MCP are the continuities of the
National Salvation Party (MSP) and the Nationalist Action Party (MHP)
that existed before the 1980 military coup. Both their predecessors and
themselves represent different ideological stands.
AN ANTI-EEC GROUP IN PARLIAMENT
The RP is for the formation of Islamic unity among
the Moslem countries all over the world, with Turkey to be its leader.
According the right-wing daily Tercüman of November
5, 1991, the RP is distinguished from other right-wing parties by the
- The European Communities are a part of the "Great
Israel" Project. Instead of adhering to the EC, Turkey should develop a
Common Islam Market with Islamic countries.
- In the military field, Turkey should be withdrawn
from the NATO and should set up, with other Islamic countries, a Common
Islamic Defence Organization.
- The State should open a Koranic Courses in every
village, a religious high school in every district and a university of
theology in every province of Turkey
- Local assemblies should be authorized to decide to
teach in schools any other language [particularly Arabic or Kurdish] by
the side of Turkish.
- However, the education carried out exclusively in
some foreign languages [particularly English, French and German]
in certain higher education schools, aiming to spread imperialist
cultures in the country, should be
- Since taking interest is considered as a sin by
the Koran, interest on bank accounts and commercial transactions should
be prohibited and the economic life should reorganized on a "no
The RP has always made it clear that it is
completely against the equality of sexes. The party leaders has
recently refused to employ female secretaries when they were setting up
the bureau of their parliamentary group in Parliament.
However, the extreme-right alliance received
votes not particularly from de religious and nationalist people, but
also from areas where small business owners and producers are located.
The RP's electoral manifesto addressed to different social categories
including workers. The RP promised new administrative management in the
work place, like the participation of workers in management and not to
fire any worker without the authorization of the Supreme Arbitration
GREY WOLVES IN PARLIAMENT
The MCP, on the other hand, is a neo-fascist party
which develops its policies on a racial basis. It is the only political
party which advocates the unity of all Turkish speaking peoples of the
world. The changes in the Soviet Union, this dream seems more
realisable for Türkes and other MCP leaders. Although they too pretend
to be attached to Islamic values, both the Islam for them is only one
of the factors that can unite all Turks under the same flag.
Moreover, the MHP was the main responsible of the
political violence which led Turkey to a military coup in 1980. The
Grey Wolves, the MHP's terrorist militants, murdered thousands of
people prior to 1980.
Although they were detained after the coup and kept
in prisons for a few years, some of these murderers have managed to
enter in Parliament as deputies thanks to their alliance with the RP.
Among them are also Muhsin Yazicioglu and Muharrem Semsek, two former
chairmen of the Idealist Youth Organization (UGD), terror organization
of Grey Wolves; Ökkes Sendiller, principal author of the massacre of
more than 100 people in Kahramanmaras in 1978; Esat Bütün who had shot
dead with machine gun 30 people in a bus in Ankara.
The ideological differences and the provocations of
former Grey Wolves may any time lead to a divorce between the RP and
the MCP. However, since 20 deputies are enough to form a parliamentary
group, 20 deputies coming from the MCP may easily leave the RP group in
However, with the remaining 40 deputies, the RP will
be one of the key political forces in the Parliament to play a key role
in coalition bargainings.
KURDISH NATIONAL MOVEMENT'S SUCCESS
The overwhelming success of the SHP in southeast
Turkey thanks to the presence of former HEP leaders in its electoral
lists has proved the Kurdish people's decisiveness to raise their
struggle for national rights as well in Parliament as by means of armed
In fact, 21 of the 27 HEP candidates who ran in the
elections on the SHP ticket have gotten into Parliament. Graphic
showed that in Kurdish areas under constant State terror, the
electorate shifted its support to the SHP, or rather to the HEP
candidates in the party.
The Workers' Party of Kurdistan (PKK) too announced
during the electoral campaign that it supported the Kurdish candidates
on the SHP ticket.
The following are the percentage of the SHP obtained
in main Kurdish provinces:
Diyarbakir (2): 71.72%
Diyarbakir (1): 32.70%
This result also reflects a polarization in Turkish
politics on the ethnic basis.
According to some comments, the SHP's success in the
East might have been obtained in the detriment of its electoral chance
in the West, particularly in metropolitans.
During the electoral campaign, DSP leader Bülent
Ecevit stated that the votes to be cast for the SHP would mean to have
been given to the illegal PKK.
Aware of the extensive influence of the Kurdish
national movement in the East, President Özal had furthered his opening
to a dialogue with the Kurdish movement and, in a pre-electoral speech
in Hakkari, said: "We have to talk openly about everything, including a
federation... The PKK has already been talking of this. We must also
give our opinion about why a federation cannot happen. Everybody should
be free to talk of their ethnic identity. The problem cannot be solved
by force of arms. We have to find a rational solution to the problem."
The PKK is reported to have welcomed Özal's remarks
and declared itself ready to discuss a political solution. "If Özal is
serious about a federative solution, this is something we cannot
ignore," Osman Öcalan, brother of PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, told a
Turkish reporter in northern Iraq.
In a gesture of goodwill, the PKK released eight
Turkish soldiers who had been kept as POW since early August.
However, DYP leader Demirel, in his first press
conference after his electoral success, appeared less comprehensive
than Özal as regards Kurdish question. He promised to crush "separatist
rebels" in the southeast. "If a gang is killing people in the
southeast, does this mean they are justified over other murders
committed elsewhere?" he said. He also said that he would not hesitate
to give order the Turkish Army to raid anywhere in the neighbour
countries supposed to be used as training base by the PKK even if this
gives way to a deterioration of relations with the country in question.
This was an allusion to Syria which has been allowing the PKK to be
based in the Bekaa Valley.
This hawkish attitude of the future Prime Minister
has already rendered difficult his party's coalition with a SHP with
Kurdish deputies in its parliamentary group.
Although the SHP had broken new ground in the
Kurdish issue in 1990 with a report which advocated recognizing Kurdish
cultural identity, the Kurdish deputies insist that the SHP adopt a
more advanced programme on the national question.
URGENT DEMANDS BY KURDISH DEPUTIES
After the election, in a 20-point memorandum, new 22
Kurdish deputies asked the SHP to adopt the following "urgent demands":
1. The Kurdish national identity should be accepted
in the Constitution and in legislation as a sociological reality;
2. All reserves as regards Kurdish national identity
put earlier in international conventions by the Turkish Government
should be lifted;
3. The Kurdish nation's rights to free expression
and to have education in Kurdish language should be recognized; Kurdish
radio and TV broadcasting should be allowed;
4. It should be created a democratic order allowing
to freely discuss the Kurdish national question and its solutions;
5. The state of emergency should be lifted with all
6. All repressive decrees should be lifted;
7. Special security teams should be withdrawn from
the [Kurdish] area;
8. The Counter Guerrilla Organization should be
9. The system of village protectors should be lifted;
10. The Anti-Terror Law should be lifted;
11. A general amnesty should be proclaimed in a view
to eliminate all consequences of the 12 September [military coup d'état
12. Prisons should be adapted to the norms of human
rights and dignity; members of Parliament should be allowed to control
all prisons and detention houses;
13. The period of police detention should be reduced
to 24 hours and a detainee's interrogation should be made in presence
of his lawyer;
14. All murders committed by unidentified persons
should be investigated and their authors should be punished;
15. The electoral system should be rendered more
16. All destroyed and burned villages should be
reconstructed and their inhabitants should be indemnified;
17. All production relations which are
systematically been destroyed should be revived; ban on the utilisation
of pastures should be lifted;
18. The right to trade union, collective bargaining
and strike should be recognized to all working people;
19. The right to general strike and strikes for
solidarity should be legalized;
20. A democratic constitution should be adopted; the
Army's General Staff should be depended on the National Defense
Former HEP Chairman Fehmi Isiklar, elected as
Diyarbakir deputy on SHP ticket, said: "Our people are in need of
internal peace and democracy, and we will contribute to this process."
Questioned on whether the HEP would consider issuing
a call to the PKK to put down their guns and accept a cease-fire,
Isiklar indicated there were conditions that would have to be met
before doing this. "This is something to be done much later. If
the government continued with its policy of rejecting the Kurdish
problem, and if it was racist, the consequences would be different. If,
however, the Kurdish question is accepted and if a peaceful solution is
brought forth, if the issue is open to a debate in which people are not
persecuted or punished for their opinions, if the circumstances enable
everyone to speak his or her mind, then such a [cease-fire] call could
be considered," he said.
TOWARDS A POLITICAL INSTABILITY
Whatsoever is the outcome of the coalition
bargainings among different political parties represented in the new
National Assembly, any coalition government without DYP seems out of
Demirel is, after a 11-year opposition period, very
eager to form a coalition government with any party which will accept
him as prime minister. In a move to assure his accession to power, he
has already forgotten his intransigence against President Özal.
At his first post-electoral press conference on
October 22, Demirel said that his party, which emerged as the winner of
the elections, will lead a coalition government. Asked whether
his pre-election views that Özal should be ousted are still valid,
Demirel said "What has been said during the campaign is now buried
there and we will not rehash anything. There may have been a few
insignificant bitter moment during the campaign, but all this has to be
forgotten. The country will not be left without a cabinet."
Although Demirel claims that his future government
will respect human rights and freedoms recognized by international
agreements his political past was full of flagrant violations of human
He was six times prime minister since 1965 and
twice ousted by the Army. His policies cracking down on the Left and
the Kurdish people and encouraging the extreme-right terrorism of the
Grey Wolves gave the military pretexts of taking over the country's
rule, in 1971 and in 1980.
In spite of his electoral promises on human rights
and freedoms, in his first post-electoral declaration Demirel swore to
crush the Kurdish national resistance and said that he would make a
coalition with a political party which share his stand concerning the
In the economic field, his electoral campaign was
largely built on promises of relief from inflation running at 67 per
cent a year. he has pledged a 500-day stability programme to put the
However, it should be recalled that inflation first
sky-rocketed in 1980 when Demirel was prime minister.
Moreover, the DYP's promises such as to grant each
family two keys, the one for a new house and the other for a car, seem
Whosoever will be Demirel's partner, those who do
not forget his disastrous performance as regards socio-economic and
political problems cannot expect a considerable amelioration under
According to the daily Hürriyet of October 31, it is
believed that the outcome of the October 20 Elections has already paved
the way for a fresh general election.
When would it take place?
Since the ANAP has not undergone an electoral
disaster, it may soon force the DYP to a new early election. In fact,
both the United States and the Turkish business circles wish to see a
DYP-ANAP Coalition in Turkey.
They justify their option with the ANAP's unexpected
performance in big cities. For example, in Istanbul ANAP emerged as the
first party with 22.4% of the votes, while DYP remained at 14.4% and
SHP at 13.8%.
Even if DYP forms for the time-being a coalition
with SHP or RP, the USA and the big business will always insist on a
coalition between DYP and ANAP, because they think that only a
coalition between two parties of which economic policies are very near
and even identical may establish "political stability" and satisfy
their expectations in economic field. They even envisage a merging
between DYP and ANAP.
For putting in practice any of these two
scenarios, ANAP seems determined to wait until a time when DYP's
coalitions with other parties doomed to failure. ANAP hopes to emerge
again as the leading party and to dictate its own conditions to DYP.
ANAP leaders do not mention a definite date for the
early election. Yet ANAP leader Mesut Yilmaz gives a rough estimate:
"Demirel is presenting a 500-day programme. Therefore, it is only
reasonable to give him 500 days." This indicates that the election may
come in eighteen months from now.
STATE TERRORISM PRIOR TO ELECTIONS
The electoral system applied during the last voting
prevented many political forces to take their place in the race with
their own identities; many of political parties founded on class or
ethnic basis, such as the PKK, are still outlawed and their all
declarations and actions are considered "crime of terror" by the new
Those left-wing parties which succeeded to be
legalized, except for the Socialist Party (SP), could not participate
in elections because of high national and provincial barrages or of
some preliminary conditions such as to be organized in all provinces or
to have held its national convention before a certain time.
Some members of these political groups entered in
the race as "independent candidates", but this attempt remained
symbolic, because the electoral system did not recognize them any
In addition to these restrictions, security forces
have been mobilized for preventing the electoral campaign by these
groups and people.
Even some left-wing or Kurdish candidates
participating in election on the party tickets could not save
themselves from being prosecuted.
The Public Prosecutor started legal proceedings
against the Socialist Party Chairman Dogu Perincek, new elected SHP
deputies Leyla Zana, Hatip Dicle and Sedat Yurttas for their electoral
speeches. All of them are accused of contravening the Anti-Terror Law.
The Prosecutor's Office is also carrying out an
action with a view to ask the Constitutional Court to close down the
Socialist Party because of its electoral programme.
Below are a few other examples of the pre-election
28.9, Nizamettin Karadeniz, a candidate for the DYP
in Diyarbakir, and Mehmet Karadeniz, Silvan chairman of the same party,
were stopped and beaten by gendarmes in Hazro .
29.9, in Izmir, about 50 people were detained by
police after a SHP rally, and 19 of them were later indicted for
participating in an unauthorized meeting.
29.9, in Van, political police arrested six SP
members after having raided their houses. The party headquarters
announced that they were subjected to torture.
30.9, in the district of Fatsa in Ordu province,
three persons were arrested as they were putting SHP posters on walls.
11.10, the office of independent Kurdish candidate
Ibrahim Aksoy was raided by the police and all propaganda material
11.10, in Istanbul, SP candidate Attila Celik and
two other party members were arrested as they were putting party
posters on walls.
13.10, a SHP poster concerning torturers was
confiscated in Istanbul.
14.10, in Urfa, 43 people were detained for having
shouted slogans in Kurdish during a SHP meeting.
Other repression by the State
15.9, in Mardin, a Kurd named Abdulmecit Cetinkaya
was shot dead in the Cimenli Village by some persons presenting
themselves as "Counter Guerrilla".
20.9, in Izmir, of 100 people detained by police as
alleged members of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Turkey (TDKP)
nine were arrested by the Izmir SSC.
20.9, in Hekimhan, Kaya Ünsalan was sentenced to a
20-month prison by a penal court for having distributed anti-war
posters during the Gulf Crisis.
20.9, in Izmir, the Rights and Freedoms Association
(Özgür-Der) was raided by police and 30 people detained.
22.9, seven people were detained in the province of
Kars for carrying out activities of an illegal organization.
22.9, special security teams raided a village,
Uluköy, in the district of Kiziltepe and three Kurdish peasants
22.9, the trial of 13 Kurds, of whom 8 women,
detained during a demonstration in Nusaybin on August 13, began at the
23.9, five officials of the Union of Training
Workers (Egitim-Is) in Bornova were indicted in Izmir for carrying out
trade union activities banned for public servants.
24.9, in Ankara, 12 people detained during an
exhibition on the occasion of the 12 September military coup's
anniversary were indicted by the Prosecutor of the Ankara SSC. Four of
them will be tried under arrest.
24.9, a Kurdish student, Yücel Halis was sentenced
to 10-year imprisonment by the Ankara SSC for participating in PKK
26.9, in Ankara, 44 parents of political prisoners
were tried by the Penal Court No. 11 for having protested the
restrictions on visits to prison. Each faces three years in prison.
26.9, in Zonguldak, 20 people were detained on
accusation of belonging to an underground organization.
27.9, police announced the detention of 17 people in
the district of Bismil, 9 people in Bursa and 5 people in Mardin for
27.9, the Kirsehir section of the Association of
Teachers (Egit-Der) by the governor for having some political
publication in its office.
27.9, three alleged Revolutionary Left (Dev-Sol)
members were tried by the Istanbul SSC. They face prison terms of from
5 to 22 years.
28.9, in Istanbul, Yusuf Hüseyin Albayrak was
arrested by a tribunal for having told President Turgut Özal "You are
always talking of his successes, talk a little bit of the bad things
that you have done," during his visit to the quarters of Süleymaniye.
He is accused of having insulted the President of the Republic.
29.9, in Izmir, Egit-Der which had been raided on
September 20 by police was closed down by the decision of the governor.
29.9, in the village of Akcapinar in Mardin,
unidentified persons shot dead Ali Erdem by raiding his house and
wounded four others.
1.10, in the district of Turhal, the headman of the
Kuzualan village, Ilhan Güney was gravely beaten and threatened with
pistol by gendarmes for having prevented soldiers from cutting wood in
3.10, a 16-year old young girl was subjected to
torture at police station for having refused to reveal the whereabouts
of her uncle. The legal medicine found eight traces of cigarette
burning on her body.
6.10, the Istanbul section of the Human Rights
Association of Turkey (IHD) has reportedly been subjected to 16
different legal pursuits of which 4 resulted in opening court
proceedings. In these cases, the IHD officials face prison terms of up
to 7 years and in two cases the prosecutor claims the closing down of
6.10, police announced the detention of 50 people in
Van within last ten days. According to the Human Rights Association
(IHD), among the detainees are also 70-year old persons and many of
them were subjected to torture.
7.10, in Trabzon, 15 students of the Technical
University were detained for distributing political tracts.
8.10, in Ankara, 87 people were detained during a
commemoration ceremony for Necdet Adali, a left-wing militant executed
after the military coup d'état of September 12, 1980.
8.10, Malatya local chairman of the People's Labour
Party (HEP), Mustafa Türk was arrested for making separatist propaganda
in the speech he made at the funeral of a PKK militant. By virtue of
Article 8 of the Anti-terror Law, he faces a prison term of up to 5
years and a fine of TL 100 Million.
9.10, the Ankara SSC decided to stop trying Nabi
Yagci (Haydar Kutlu) and Nihat Sargin, respectively chairman and
secretary general of the United Communist Party of Turkey (TBKP) for
contravening Articles 140, 141 and 142 of the Turkish Penal Code
because these articles were lifted. However the SSC decided to transfer
their files opened by virtue of Articles 158 and 159 to a penal court
10.10, the Istanbul SSC began to try seven alleged
Dev-Sol members. The prosecutor claims capital punishment for each of
13.10, the IHD reported that many villagers in the
district of Kozluk were detained and subjected to tortured.
14.10, a demonstration in protest against the
educational system by the students of the Medicine Faculty of Bursa was
prevented by the gendarmerie and seven students detained. Same day,
five students of a Tourism School in Aydin were detained for organizing
a meeting and sent to the Izmir SSC.
14.10, it is reported that in last two weeks ten
people were detained in Izmir and Manisa for "separatist" activities.
15.10, a woman named Mediha Curabaz alleged that she
was tortured and violated during her detention in Adana police
headquarters between August 15 and 20. Her lawyers applied to the
Prosecutor's office for an investigation.
15.10, Switz citizen Miss Barbara Anna Kistler's
demand to be released was turned down by the Istanbul SSC. She had been
arrested five months ago together with a group of Turkish political
17.10, in Istanbul, three alleged members of the
Union of Revolutionary Communists of Turkey (TIKB) were detained.
During the operation, a young woman, Lale Colak was wounded by police.
18.10, police has detained 20 people during a 3-day
operation in Ankara.
TURKISH ARMY'S ANNIHILATION OPERATION
As Turkish political parties were racing in
electoral campaign to promise ameliorating the country's human rights
record, the Turkish Army restarted bombing Kurdish villages in northern
Iraq on October 11, on a pretext to retaliate for four cross-border
raids by PKK militants in which 24 Turkish soldiers were killed..
The incursion into northern Iraq was continued from
October 25 on with special crack troops supported by F-104 fighter jets
and helicopters hitting at alleged PKK bases.
According to Iraqi sources, 12 people were killed in
Turkish raids on eight Kurdish villages in northern Iraq. Iraqi Foreign
Ministry, in a letter to U.N. Secretary General Javier Perez de
Cuellar, said the incursion represented "a flagrant violation of the
U.N. Charter and international law."
The target of these attacks, the Workers' Party of
Kurdistan (PKK), in a press communique issued on November 1st in
Europe, said that the Turkish Army's operation had been a total
"Fighters F4 and F104 as well as helicopters bombed
villages and towns and carried out flights on cities for terrorizing
the population," said the PKK. "The air-ground
operation in Southern Kurdistan could not give us any
considerable loss. Only during our attack on the military post in
Cayirli, four combatants of the ARGK (Popular Liberation Army of
Kurdistan) perished and six others were wounded.
"According to other sources, Turkish fighters killed
12 civilians, including women and children, and wounded a number of
"It was proved before the Western journalists who
were in the region of Dohouk and Zakho that the Turkish State used
napalm bombs during the operation. Using of napalm destroyed a number
of villages and burnt many fields. Destroyed villages: Seladiza (12
thousand inhabitants), Qadise, Banik, Kakne, Silan, Siyar, Surya,
Dédeluk, Begova, Barzan, Berberka, Bilé, Rezan, Konamij and Spindar.
"The Turkish State's declaration such as 'We are
going to annihilate the PKK' and 'We have subjected the PKK to heavy
losses" have doomed to a total failure. "
Kurdish Democratic Party leader Massoud Barzani,
accusing Turkey of bombing and strafing Kurdish villages, said they
will fight back if Turkish ground forces attack again. "The Turkish
should remember that we can do many things against them on the ground
inside Turkey if we choose. If the Turks think they will get us to
change our position on autonomy with these tactics, they are mistaken.
We faced the Iraqi army and chemical attacks, a few Turkish warplanes
do not frighten us."
Even the USA, main supporter of the Turkish regime,
admitted that Turkey bombed civilian targets.
U.S. Assistant State Secretary on Human Rights
Richard Schifter, after a briefing on the Oslo Summit Conference for
Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), on October 29, said to
Turkish journalists: "It appears that you have missed your targets."
Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi, on October 30,
called for U.N. action against Turkish "land and air attacks launched
against the poor Kurds and civilians and children." He called the
operation "a massacre."
Germany protested on October 14 against the Turkish
bombing and vowed to do all in its power to stop the attacks. '"We made
it clear that the federal government will use all means at its disposal
to protect the lives of the innocent and suffering Kurdish population
in Iraq," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hanns Schumacher said.
Furthermore, according to the daily Hürriyet of November 1st, Germany
asked Turkey not to use German armoured vehicles in the Southeast. The
German armoured vehicles, which are suitable to combat guerrilla
warfare and detect mines, were transferred to Turkey as part of a
military aid package as agreed during the Gulf Crisis.
Despite the international reaction and protests, as
well the Turkish Army as Turkish political parties seem determined to
carry on "annihilation operation."
Turkish Chief of General Staff General. Dogan Güres
said on October 17 that the Turkish military could finish off the PKK
in six months.
The National Security Council, composed of all Army
chiefs and some ministers, held a 6-hour meeting on October 31 with the
purpose of taking more efficient measures to cope with the Kurdish
According to press reports, it was decided to
establish a "Command Control Center" under the framework of the
Regional Governate to coordinate the military war on the PKK. Besides,
new commando troops and armoured vehicles will be deployed for coping
with the PKK militants.
A KURDISH FILM PRODUCER TORTURED
A Kurdish film producer, Senar Turgut was
tortured after being detained for aiding the PKK.
The producer of the film Xene u Siyabend, based on a
Kurdish legend, was detained in Van on September 28. After a 13-day
police detention he was sent to the Diyarbakir State Security Court .
He will be tried by virtue of the Anti-Terror Law.
Turgut told journalists that he was subjected
to all sorts of torture, similar to the torture depicted in scenes in
his former film, Karartma Geceleri (Blackout Nights).
Turgut was also detained after the shooting of
Blackout Nights and was later on given a special award by Parliament.
During shooting of the film, the crew met with
difficulties and restrictions. They could not get permission to stay at
Heset village where the film was being shot, instead they had to travel
between the city of Van and the village each day. The art director of
the film, Akif Adsiz said that Turgut had nothing to do with any
political movement. "The main point of his work is to initiate the
birth of Kurdish cinema," he said.
The script writer of Xene u Siyabend and chairman of
the Kurdish PEN Club, Hüseyin Erdem, has taken initiative for gaining
support from international circles such as Amnesty International,
George Bush and Hans Dietrich Genscher.
INCREASING ATTACKS ON JOURNALISTS
According to a communique by the Press Council of
Turkey, attacks on journalists have been intensified for last three
In 1989, 48 journalists were attacked in 24 cases;
in 1990, 54 journalists in 27 cases; within the eight months of 1991,
44 journalists in 21 cases.
The Press Council, pointing out that 58 out of 72
attacks in last three years were carried out by State agents, said:
"Harassing journalists has been a hobby for the State agents. Among
them are district governors, prosecutors, Electoral Board members and
even some judges."
PRESSURE ON THE MEDIA PRIOR TO ELECTIONS
22.9 writer Fikret Baskaya was indicted by virtue of
Article 8 of the Anti-Terror Law for separatist propaganda in his book
entitled The failure of Westernization, Modernization, Development and
Paradigms. This book had earlier been confiscated by the State Security
Court. The author faces five years in prison and a fine of TL 50
Million ($10,638). Besides, the prosecutor claims a fine of TL
100 Million ($ 21,276) for the publisher of the book, Mehmet Selim
24.9, the distribution of a musi-cassette of popular
singer Melike Demirag was prohibited by the decision of the Culture
Ministry. Demirag has been deprived of Turkish nationality for her
anti-regime activities abroad. The banned cassette, entitled Chanting
From Abroad, contains the songs she produced in exile
28.9, Cizre correspondent of the weekly Yeni Ülke,
Abdullah Arisoy was sentenced by a local court to a 3-month
imprisonment for having collected aid for Kurdish refugees. The prison
term was later commuted to a fine.
29.9, new issues of the weekly Yeni Ülke, No.49 and
the fortnightly Emegin Bayragi, No.50, were confiscated by the Istanbul
SSC by virtue of Article 8 of the Anti-Terror Law.
2.10, a book by journalist Rafet Balli, entitled
File On Kurds, was confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for "separatist
propaganda. It contains a series of interviews of Kurdish leaders and
3.10, the printing and distribution of a poster
against the Anti-Terror Law, produced by the Human Rights Association
of Turkey (IHD), was forbidden by the Governor of Istanbul.
3.10, the trial of sociologist Prof. Ismail Besikci
began at the Ankara SSC. Besikci is accused of instigating separatist
activities by writing anti-Turkish propaganda in his book entitled
State Terror in the Middle East. If convicted, Besikci can be sentenced
to up to five years in prison and a fine of up to TL 100 million ($
21,276) by virtue of Article 8 of the Anti-Terror Law.
4.10, the responsible editor of the daily Günes,
Isik Yurtcu was indicted by virtue of Article 30 of the Press Law for
having revealed a formal charge before it was read at tribunal. He will
be tried by a penal court in Istanbul.
4.10, it is reported that 18 out of 49 issues of the
weekly Yeni Ülke published in last one year have been confiscated by
the Istanbul SSC. Public prosecutors opened against the weekly's
editors and writers a total of 47 legal proceedings at the Istanbul SSC
and 55 at different penal courts in Istanbul. 29 of these cases have
been opened by the virtue of the Anti-Terror Law.
6.10, writer Esber Yagmurdereli, journalist Ragip
Duran and trade unionist Attila Yalcin were indicted by the Prosecutor
of the Istanbul SSC for the speeches that they made during a IHD
meeting on September 8. They are accused of contravening Article 8 of
the Anti-Terror Law.
6.10, the responsible editor of the local newspaper
Gözlem in the district of Yalova, Zeki Öcal was indicted by virtue of
Article 312 of the Turkish Penal Code. The prosecutor of the Istanbul
SSC claims a 3-year prison term for the journalist.
6.10, the Nusaybin correspondent of the weekly Yeni
Ülke, Vahap Aslan was indicted for a news about the funeral of a PKK
militant. He will be tried by the Diyarbakir SSC.
9.10, the last issue of the youth review Devrimci
Genclik was confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
10.10, the public prosecutor opened a new legal
proceeding against Prof. Ismail Besikci for an article he wrote for the
monthly Toplumsal Kurtulus. Besikci and the review's responsible
editor, Necdet Kandemir, will be tried by virtue of Article 312 of the
Turkish Penal Code. Both face a prison term of up to 4 years.
11.10, the responsible editor of the daily
Karaman'in Sesi, Alibey Akkan was arrested for insulting God and
religions in an article.
19.10, four people distributing in Istanbul a
special issue of the fortnightly Emegin Bayragi, concerning elections,
were taken into custody.
19.10, the monthly review Halay was confiscated in
Sanliurfa for containing the text of a play that the prosecutor
considers contravening Article 312 of the Turkish Penal Code.
18 SUSPICIOUS DEATHS IN DETENTION
The Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (TIHV) issued
on October 4 the list of 18 suspected deaths occurred within the
nine months of this year:
1. Cumali Copur was found dead on January 12 in
Nevsehir Prison Type E.
2. Tevfik Timur, detained in Ankara on January 5,
his dead body was handed over to his family on January 14.
3. Birtan Altunbas, detained on January 10 in
Ankara, died in hospital on January 16.
4. Haydar Arman, detained on January 17 in Istanbul
and sent to Ankara, died in Central Prison of Ankara on January 24.
5. Irfan Basbuga, detained on January 31 in Ankara,
died same day in Anafartalar Police Station.
6. Kasim Aras, after a two-month imprisonment, died
in Ankara University Hospital on January 30.
7. Ali Riza Agdogan, detained on February 12,
entered in coma two days later and died in hospital on February
8. Imran Aydin, detained in Ankara on February 2 and
died next day in police station.
9. Yusuf Eristi has disappeared after his detention
in Istanbul on March 14.
10. Hasim Sincar, detained in the district of Solhan
of the Bingöl province on April 4, died same day at the Gendarmerie
post during his interrogation.
11. Veli Geles was detained on April 1st in Ankara,
his dead body with three holes of bullet was transferred to hospital on
12. Haydar Altun has disappeared since his arrest in
a Kurdish camp in Iraq in March.
13. Alaattin Kürekci, detained in Istanbul on May
16, was hospitalized next day and died there on May 20.
14. Osman Ekinci, shepherd, died in a a gendarmerie
post in Sirnak after his detention on July 20.
15. Hanefi Göllü, detained in Gaziantep on August
11, died same day at the Police Headquarter during his interrogation.
16. Süleyman Dalga, detained for aiding the PKK in
the district of Digor, died at the Dagpinar gendarmerie post on August
9 during his interrogation.
17. Serafettin Celik died at the Police Headquarters
of Gaziantep on September 8, during his interrogation.
18. Osman Keles, detained on September 7 in the
district of Patnos, died on September 18 at the Police Headquarters of
Agri during interrogation.
EUROPEAN REPORT ON TORTURE IN TURKEY
The Council of Europe's Committee for Prevention of
Torture is in the process of preparing a report on Turkey. A
five-member committee visited Turkey between September 25 and October
7, and observed various prisons and police stations in Ankara, Istanbul
The Agreement for Prevention of Torture, to which
Turkey is a signatory, gives the committee the right to conduct
inspections in a country without previous notice.
The committee's report will be released to the press
after Turkish authorities have an opportunity to add their own views
and express possible reservations.
HUMAN RIGHTS SYMPOSIUM IN TURKEY
Prior to the elections, the ANAP Government, in a
move to charm Europe, organised in Turkey a symposium on "The
International Protection of Human Rights and and the Turkish Grand
Opened by President Özal on October 5 in Antalya,
the symposium was attended by some 500 people. However, there was
little agreement among the speakers or audience as to the facts about
human rights in Turkey.
While many Turkish politicians and foreign
personalities were invited to the symposium as lecturers", the Human
Rights Association (IHD) and the Human Rights Foundation (TIHV) of
Turkey were invited with "observer" status.
TIHV Chairman Yavuz Önen protested Ankara's attitude
in following terms:
"We condemn the Turkish Grand National Assembly for
manipulating human rights as a subject of political exploitation. No
excuses can be raised for the prevention of our organization from
speaking and participating in discussions in such a symposium on human
rights. It is obvious that the aim is to fool Europe and conceal
the human rights related problems in Turkey."
IHD Chairman Nevzat Helvaci told reporters that
torture was still being used extensively in Turkey as a means of
interrogation and suppression. "The Anti-Terror Law put into affect
this year carries provisions that actually works to protect the
practice of torture. The detention period is very long, ranging from 48
hours to 15 days and even 30 days, depending on different situations,"
In his opening speech, President Özal blamed the
West for using human rights as a weapon and a foreign policy tool. "An
intervention into the internal affairs of other countries for the sole
purpose of promoting human rights and liberties may lead to
unpredictable disturbances in the internal balances of the countries
concerned," he said.
EC Ambassador to Turkey Michael Lake stated that
Turkey's dismal human rights performance coloured its image in the West
and the EC, even though the government was taking significant steps to
improve the situation. "Turkey actually has fallen behind the former
Communist countries and it must correct that situation quickly," he
INDEX OF THE 15th YEAR INFO-TÜRK COLLECTION
NOVEMBER 1990, No. 169:
Turkish Gladio: the Counter Guerrilla Organization •
State of emergency extended • Özal's new diplomatic manoeuvres •
On-going prosecution of children • International solidarity with
Info-Türk editors • Arrests at Human Rights Congress • Hunger-strikes
in Turkish prisons • Death sentences reached 315 • 962,855 persons
recorded • State terrorism in October • Prosecution of the Media in
October • Mass protests by university students • A television scandal •
Minister: "Flirting = Prostitution" • Questions on Özal's family's
fortune • Members of Parliament bribed! • An alarming report on
fundamentalist penetration to educational system • Turkey's
population: 57 Million • 21 Million deprived of social security • ILO
urges the Turkish regime
DECEMBER 1990, No. 170:
Fait accompli: Özal, more warmonger than Turkish
generals, proclaims general mobilization • Info-Türk editors appealed
to the European Commission of Human Rights • Turkish Gladio used
against Kurdish Guerrilla • Special war in Turkish Kurdistan • Pacifist
school girl's tumultuous trial • Prosecution of minors in November •
State terrorism in November • Prosecution of the Media in November •
48,000 miners' strike turned into a non-stop anti-government
demonstration • Discrimination of women in Turkey • Towards a new
left-wing party • Paris Charter and Turkey • Towards a Black Sea
JANUARY 1991, No. 171:
Second Front in the Gulf War • Strikes forbidden
throughout Turkey on the pretext of war • Massive anti-war
demonstrations • Özal's expansionist designs • Awful persecution of
children • Deportation decree modified! • 15,000 suspects wanted by
police • 10 Billion TL for informers • Arrests, trials and pressures in
December • Killings in Turkish Kurdistan • 1990: Black Year for the
Press • Persecution of the Media in December • The business claims more
FEBRUARY 1991, No. 172:
The Hour of Truth • Human Rights summary of the year
1990 in Turkey • Five deaths in detention • Treatment centre for
torture victims • One-fourth of prisoners are ill • Censorship on the
Turkish Press • 2000'e Dogru again banned • Pressure on the Media in
January • State terrorism in January • Debates on Turkey at European
MARCH 1991, No. 173:
Betrayal to Kurds • Crack-down on Kurds in Turkey •
Two more deaths in detention • Amnesty International on Turkey • Yüzyil
reporters underwent torture • Pressure on the Media in February • State
terrorism in February • Mrs. Özal's political ambitions • Belgian stand
on Kurdish Question • Turkey's deficit over $2 Billion • Women
subjected to torture • Özal's visit to the Soviet Union • Turkish
protests in Bulgaria
APRIL 1991, No. 174:
A Sham Amnesty • Stockholm Conference on Kurds •
Brussels Colloquy on the Christians of Turkey • Political refugees and
Stateless opponents under menace • Real face of the releases • Articles
140, 141, 142 and 163 • Remaining repressive articles • A new
repressive law • New menaces to the Press • Torturers under State
protection • Last prosecutions under Articles 142 and 163 •
MAY 1991, No. 175:
After the sham amnesty, State Terror reinforced •
Full text of the Law to Fight Terrorism • Police terror on May Day •
Turk-Is leader indicted • Other cases of State terrorism • Suspicious
deaths • Persecution of the Media • Turkey again on ILO's agenda •
Turkish regime found guilty • Turkey not even semi-democratic •
JUNE 1991, No. 176:
Lifting of the ANAP • State terror in Turkish
Kurdistan • Is the Constitution still valid? • Ecevit's surprising talk
with Özal • Bush to visit Turkey in July • Fear of political attempts
in Ankara • Increasing left-wing armed actions • Özal's attack on the
Press • Recent persecution of the media • Dr. Ismail Besikci awarded •
Hunger-strikes throughout Turkey • International reaction to
Anti-terror Law • No hope for EC membership • Socialist International
in Turkey • World Bank and OECD are pessimist • Gulf Crisis burden:
$6.2 billion • An Islamic private TV channel • Using of three colours
banned • Execution without trial • First anti-terror trial • Trial of
torturers halted • The trial of TBKP officials goes on • Persecution of
legal parties • DISK not yet freed • Detained for Christian propaganda
@ Other cases of State terrorism •
JULY/AUGUST 1991, No. 177/178:
Turkish Army and Death-Squads spread terror • A
balance sheet of the Kurdish Guerrilla in Turkey • Attack on the Kurds
in Iraq • "Poised Hammer" Force in Turkey • Further Turkish
expansionism? • TIHV's Torture report • Helsinki Watch's report •
Discrimination of Kurdish prisoners • Emergency censorship in Kurdistan
• TBKP closed down by court • DISK acquitted after 11 years • State
terrorism in June-July • Virginity test for a German tourist • Dr.
Besikci again under arrest • Persecution of the Media in June-July
SEPTEMBER 1991, No. 179:
Elections: 20th October • Turkey: a country of
torture • A new torture rehabilitation centre • Police brutality
throughout Turkey • Children still prosecuted • Articles 141-142 still
in force? • 8,743 people on a new black list • Kurdish language still
denied • Özal and the leaders of Iraqi Kurds • Warning to foreign
tourists • No burial in Turkey for a dissident •Persecution of the
Media in two months • DISK restarts its activities • No immediate
solution on Cyprus • Turkish contestation in Greece • Turkish
contestation in Bulgaria
OCTOBER 1991, NO. 180:
Outcome of the elections: Era of Coalitions •
Alarming rise of Extreme-Right • An anti-EEC group in Parliament • Grey
Wolves in Parliament • Kurdish national movement's success •
Urgent demands by Kurdish deputies • Towards a political instability •
State terrorism prior to elections • Turkish Army's annihilation
operation • A Kurdish film producer tortured • Increasing attacks on
journalists • Pressure on the Media prior to elections • 18 suspicious
deaths in detention • European report on torture in Turkey • Human
Rights Symposium in Turkey