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


19th Year - N°218
January-February 1995
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 Human Rights Association (IHD), at a press conference on January 15,  gave the details of human rights violations in Turkey in 1994. The IHD Secretary General, Hüsnü Öndül said that 1994 had been a bad year for human rights.
    The following are the figures reported by the IHD:
    Those convicted    1,209
    Those detained    14,473
    Alleged disappearances under detention    328
    Suspicious murders    292
    Extrajudicial execution and deaths under detention    298
    Alleged torture cases    1,000
    Those killed in the clashes    5,000
    Civilians victims of actions    458
    Burned down/evacuated villages, hamlets    1,500
    Burned forests    31
    Closed organizations, parties, publications    123
    Raided organizations, parties, publications    119
    Bombed places    191
    Ordered imprisonment sentences    533 years 5 months
    Ordered fines    TL 55 billions 725 millions
    Demanded imprisonment sentences    1,081 years 6 months
    Demanded fines    TL 7 billions 233 millions
    Confiscated publications    450
    Journalists, scholars, writers, MPs in prison    100
    Dismissed workers    700,000

    In January 1995

    Despite the protests from international organizations, the human rights violations considerably increased in January 1995 compared to the same period last year.
    At a press conference on February 20, IHD Chairman Akin Birdal gave the following figures:`

     Those convicted    253
    Those detained    1,233
    Alleged disappearances under detention    28
    Suspicious murders    15
    Extrajudicial execution and deaths under detention    12
    Alleged torture cases    23
    Those killed in the clashes    242
    Civilians victims of actions    28
    Burned down/evacuated villages, hamlets    16
    Closed organizations, publications    7
    Raided organizations, publications    25
    Bombed places    19
    Ordered imprisonment sentences    10 years 6 months
    Ordered fines    TL 1 billions 434 millions
    Demanded imprisonment sentences    131 years 5 months
    Demanded fines    TL 2 billions 750 millions
    Confiscated publications    61
    Journalists, scholars, writers, MPs in prison    143
    Dismissed workers    524

    Birdal said if Turkey wanted a green light from the European Parliament for the customs union it should change its legislative and executive practices. He listed the necessary steps that should be taken to gain the approval of the European Parliament as follows:
    - People who were in prison for their thoughts should be released immediately.
    - The relevant articles of the Turkish Penal Code and Anti-Terror Law, which caused people to be persecuted for their thoughts, should be abolished.
    - As a result, the ongoing trials of those charged with crimes of expression should be stopped.
    - The legislation against freedom of the press should be changed and censorship should be abolished.
    - Former DEP deputies should be released and the necessary changes should be implemented in the Constitution for those deputies to regain their places in the Parliament.
    - Oppression of human rights activists should be stopped.
    - The necessary regulations should be implemented to prevent torture, the disappearance of detainees, extrajudicial executions and mysterious killings.
    - Evacuations and burning down of villages in the Southeast and Eastern Turkey should be stopped and the losses of the villagers should be compensated.
    - The village guards and special crack teams that have been operating in the same region should be dissolved.
    - The state of emergency in the Southeast and eastern provinces should be abolished and a civilian, democratic system implemented.

    Interior Minister Nahit Mentese announced on January 28 that the financial burden of combating Kurdish guerrilla in the Southeast is around TL 500 trillion ($12.5 billion).     However, addressing a meeting of the Aegean Young Businessmen's Association (EGIAD) in Izmir, Mentese discounted any suggestions of a "political solution", claiming that a political settlement with the PKK would mean in effect the division of Turkey.
    On the other hand, the Interior Minister, on January 16, gave the following statistics on the anti-PKK War:
    PKK militants killed    4,060
    PKK militants wounded    149
    PKK militants captured    11,852
    Security personnel killed    1,089
    Security personnel wounded    2,586
    Citizens killed    1,062
    Citizens wounded    1,775


    As the Ankara regime is very often being condemned as well by the elected representatives of Europe, notably at the Council of Europe and the European Parliament,  as by the international media, the European governments, taking no heed of public opinion, have honoured this bloodthirsty regime with two unmerited titles:
    1. According to an agreement already signed on January 31, 1994, Turkey will be the "star country" of the Europalia 1996.
    2. According to an accord to be signed by the Council of Ministers on March 6, 1995, Turkey will be, from January 1st, 1996, an associate member of the European Union having a Customs Union with 15 countries.
    Although the European Parliament announced on February 16 that the human rights situation in Turkey is too serious to allow the formation of the proposed customs union at present and it would not ratify this union as far as human rights are not respected, Mrs. Tansu Ciller already started loudly speaking of a historical victory over the opponents of the regime.
    In this issue, we are giving the text of the European Parliament and certain preoccupations of the Turkish  media concerning the outcome of the Customs Union.
    The further analyses on the Customs Union and the European concessions on the matter will be given in the coming Info-Türk issue.
    As for Europalia, despite the warnings coming from human rights organizations, the International Europalia Foundation disqualified some democratic countries to the benefit of the Ankara regime and signed the agreement Europalia 96-Turkey agreement on January 31, 1994, in Istanbul with the Turkish Prime Minister Hikmet Cetin.
    Prior to the signature of the agreement, Belgian daily Le Soir, on January 29, 1994, said: "Having regard to the political situation of this country and few weeks after the confrontations between Turks and Kurds on the Belgian territory, this obviously raises certain questions."
    No doubt, one of the principal questions was: "How will Belgium welcome the rulers of such a country during the 1996 Festival as the men of culture and science, Turkish or Kurdish, are still the principal target of the State terror?"
    Does Belgium consider the respect to human dignity and fundamental rights less important than the financial investment of Turkey to the organization of this festival? It had already been announced in the Turkish press, the Ankara Government considered this festival as a political conquest rather than a cultural event.
    Months ago, the Turkish Foreign Minister Hikmet Cetin had held a series of meeting with Turkish businessmen and called them to allocate maximum resources to this festival for gaining over the European opinion and to make it forget Turkey's shameful human rights record.
    What is more, as the Anatolia is the cradle of many civilisations, how can the Europalia-96 make the propaganda of a regime that systematically destroy all remnants of these civilisations?
    In Le Soir of January 29, 1994, Baron Godeaux, Chairman of the International Europalia Foundation, admitted that the financial preoccupation rather than respect to human rights and cultural values was the main reason of their shameful choice:
    "We are blamed of presenting the culture of the State-nation alone. We have many times researched other formulas, but without the aid of States, all organization would fall on our shoulders, which is unthinkable from the financial point of view."
    The signature of the agreement was announced by the pro-government Turkish press with the following headlines: "It is Belgium that will make us recognized in Europe," "A historical occasion," "Turkish flags in Brussels," "A European chance for Turkey!"
    According to a law adopted by the Turkish National Assembly on September 22, 1994, the organization of the Europalia-96 is being carried on as a work of the Turkish State's propaganda apparatus.
    The law first describes the Europalia as "a festival consisting of political, economic, commercial, cultural, social and tourist performances."
    The festival's organization is conducted by the National Europalia Board of Turkey chaired by a State Secretary and composed of the representatives of foreign affairs, finance, culture and tourism ministries.
    After the condemnation of DEP deputies and devastation of the Özgür Ülke offices, Info-Türk Chief Editor Dogan Özgüden, by an article to Le Soir of December 23, 1994, called again the Europalia Foundation to cancel Europalia-96 Turkey:
    "As sociologist Ismail Besikci, who is Turk, serves imprisonment totalling more than sixty years and faces hundreds years at pending trials for his essays defending the Kurdish identity and culture, how will Belgium receive his jailers?
    "If one speaks of the splendour and richness of Anatolia's cultural and artistic values, it should be admitted that they are also masterpieces of its native peoples. Because, before Turkish arrival in Anatolia in 1071, Kurds, Greeks, Armenians and Assyrians were already there.
    "Whereas, these peoples and their artistic, cultural and religious values are systematically destroyed by the Ankara regime. It remains, at present, only tens of thousands Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks in Turkey. Aren't their last cultural and religious sanctuaries menaced by destruction? As for the Kurds, their villages and birthplaces are in flames under the assault of raging chauvinism of the Turkish Army and the Extreme-Right.
    "How will the King of Belgians and the federal, community and regional leaders be able to 'embrace' the representatives of such a regime on the pretext of making recognized the Anatolian cultural richness?
    "Europalia '96 is already a battle horse for a diplomacy at the service of the State Terrorism.
    "However, despite this clumsy decision, above all after the condemnation of Kurdish deputies, isn't it thinkable to simply renounce the Europalia-Turkey, to postpone it to a further date — a date when Turkey will prove its democratic maturity and will no more imprison its men and women of culture and science, when all the peoples having created Anatolia's cultural splendor, Armenians, Assyrians, Greeks and Kurds as well as Turks attached to European democratic values will no more be subjected to State terror.
    "It seems indispensable for that Europalia-96 does not risk turning into festivities of shame."
    This article has been responded defensively by the Europalia Foundation, but aggressively by the Turkish Embassy.     In their joint reply (Le Soir, December 27, 1994), Europalia Chairman Baron Jean Godeaux and General Commissioner Marcel van de Kerckhove, arguing that they are criticizing and reproaching the condemnation of Kurdish deputies as much as the author of the article, say: "Surely, the risk of political taking over does exist. But out public have always been able to take things into account. With this conviction, we have believed — and always believe — that we are not taking part of Kreon against Antigone. (...) We are thinking of Jean Monnet's these words: 'We are not uniting States in coalition, but we are uniting the peoples.'"
    Unfortunately, since then the situation has not changed, on the contrary, many new spectacular violations of human rights have happened in Turkey. But nobody heard a single reproaching word from the Europalia officials in Brussels, neither after the prosecution of two internationally renown intellectuals, Aziz Nesin and Yasar Kemal, nor after the publisher of The Armenian Taboo, Mrs. Ayse Nur Zarakolu was sentenced to two years for this book!
    The risk of political taking over of the Festival by the Ankara regime is getting greater each day. What does it mean to define in the Turkish law the Europalia as "a festival consisting of political performances" among the others? Of whom are these political performances?
    Why is the Turkish National Europalia Board composed of the repressive government members alone and why there is not any representatives of Kurds, Armenians, Assyrians or Greeks in Europalia committee and sub-committees?
    Is this the way of uniting peoples?
    Anyway, since financial preoccupations of the Europalia Foundation administrators are more important than human rights, let them enjoy that Turkey has already guaranteed $25 millions of the $40 million Europalia budget.
    As for the answer of the Turkish Embassy's Press Councillor (Le Soir, December 30, 1994), like all official declarations, it is full of insinuating and paranoiac arguments: "Once again, Mr. Özgüden endeavours with a suspect attention not to touch the real problem that Turkey is currently confronted: the terrorist action of the PKK. By laying into Turkey tooth and nail nobody can annihilate its importance and make it disappear from the map."
    In another injurious answer (Le Soir, January 10, 1995) signed by a servant of the Turkish Embassy, after a hysterical cry, "Turkey belongs to Turks!", the shameful persecution of Besikci is justified in following terms: "If Mister Ismail Besikci is condemned  while many other men and women of letters are in peace, it is his fault. Because, democracy is done of a whole of all rules to be respected and these rulers are being applied to everyone in an equal and just manner. It is to you to think it over!"
    Yes, the Europalia-96  has already turned into a festival of shame which rather merits the title of Terropalia!
    Now it is to the International Europalia Foundation, but also and particularly to Belgian human rights organizations to think over this clumsy choice!


    The European Parliament, at its February 16 sitting in Strasbourg, adopted a new resolution describing Ankara's human rights record as "too grave to allow for the formation of the proposed custom union at present."
    Same day, the European Parliament adopted another resolution concerning the persecution of novelist Yasar Kemal.
    According to the first resolution, even if the EU-Turkey Custom Union Agreement is signed in Brussels on March 6 as scheduled, the European Parliament will not ratify it unless Turkey makes progress considerable amelioration on the situation of human rights.
    The EP resolution reads:
    "The European Parliament,
    "A. whereas the Turkish political parties have agreed to examine the modifications to be made to the Constitution, which may effect the very provisions that led to the trial of the parliamentarians,
    "B. whereas, however, the latest Amnesty International report, the Turkish Human Rights Association and the Human Rights Foundation all record a serious deterioration in the human rights situation in Turkey,
    "C. whereas, with regard to agreements with third countries, the conditionality clause on human rights is deemed important by all EU institutions,
    "1. Believes that the human rights situation in Turkey is too serious to allow the formation of the proposed customs union at present;
    "2. Appeals to the Turkish Government and to the Turkish Grand National Assembly to undertake a fundamental reform of its Constitution in order better to guarantee the protection of democracy and human rights in Turkey, and to contribute to a solution of the Cyprus problem;
    "3. Calls on the Commission to establish a system of interim reporting on the modifications currently being made to the Turkish Constitution and, more generally, on the measures taken and to be taken to strengthen the rule of law; reminds the Commission and the Council that the planned agreement establishing a customs union between the European Union and Turkey must be submitted for Parliament's assent, which it intends to make conditional on the interim reports on progress made."

    Although the signature of the Customs Union with the European Union has become a matter of prestige for the Ciller Government, the outcome of this union has recently been the object of a polemic in Turkey.
    In fact, many people do not know exactly what means a customs union with the European Union. As the pro-government circles consider the conclusion of the union as a further step toward Turkey's full membership of the European Union and consequently as a political victory, many observers often raise the following questions:
    - Does the customs union give Turkey an advantage over the Central and Eastern European countries?
    - How will Turkey, the only non-member country to achieve customs union in 1996, be placed in the neo-concentric circles theory of France and Germany, the self-declared core states of the EU?
    - Will it be in the second ring with the "slower EU states" or will it be in the third ring with "the rest of Europe"?
    - Will Ankara be able to play a leading role in the Mediterranean drive?
    Recently, the chief editorialist of the daily Hürriyet, Oktay Eksi qualified the customs union as a Turkish capitulation to an international union, because Turkey will have no say in the EU's economic and political decisions and will, by this union, be obliged to apply them even if they are against its own interests.
    On the other hand, The Turkish Daily News of November 24, 1994, resumed the pros and the cons of the customs union as follows:

The pros...

    1. The removal of non-tariff barriers in sectors where Turkey has a high level of international competitiveness, like textiles and food industry, will lead to a boom in exports, which might in turn give a major boost to economic growth. Investment volume and employment will increase considerably, the latter due to the fact that these sectors are mostly labor-intensive ones.
    2. The adoption by Turkey of common customs tariffs against third countries will offer the same preferential trade options that are enjoyed by the EU. Besides, certain industries will have access to cheaper inputs thanks to common tariffs enabling them to boost their competitiveness.
    3. Foreign investment in the Turkish economy, both from the EU states and other international investors will significantly increase. Increased foreign investment will not only create new jobs but will also help to boost exports.
    4. Turkish industries will have to use European production standards and this will lead to a massive utilization of European technology. Turkey will renovate its existing technology while firms, particularly large-scale firms, will increase innovative activity. Experts anticipate a rise in Turkey's research and development spending in real terms after completion of the customs union.
    5. In macro terms, the customs union will help by automatically imposing better economic discipline on Turkey, which will have no alternative other than to adopt the EU's practices and rules in economic management. This, in the medium to long-term, might help build macroeconomic stability. Administrative and regulatory disciplines will also improve.
    6. Turkish consumers will be offered a wider range of choices at better prices and higher quality, especially in the automotive industry and home appliances sectors.
    7. Turkish consumers will also enjoy the protection of an "official shield" against exploitation. Consumer protection law, which is an essential to achieve customs union, will help to legally defend the basic rights of millions of consumers.
    8. Illegal gains from violations of intellectual property rights will partly be removed as Turkey will have to conclude legislation on this issue. Turkey will no longer be called a "pirateland."
    9. The government will have practical and legal means to maintain surveillance on cartel agreements within the framework of a competition law, which is another legislative essential. Antitrust laws will further protect consumers.
    10. There will be better surveillance of environment protection issues. Both Turkish and EU manufacturers will be required to make environment protection investments to support their original investment projects. Environmental experts anticipate better environmental care after customs union.

...and the cons

    1. Turkey's sectors of low competitiveness will have to confront tough rivalry from EU counterparts and some of them may possibly fail. The automotive industry (including spare parts manufacturing) is a potential candidate to suffer from customs union. Other critical sectors are home appliances, iron-steel, electrical devices and chemical products. Experts point out that while sectors of low level competitiveness may fail, there are further sectors which show promise in the longer-term but currently have a low level of competitiveness, that may be unable to withstand the competition at the moment.
    2. All this does not mean Turkey's highly-competitive sector will be perfectly comfortable either. Almost identical sectors in four member states, Italy, Portugal, Greece and Italy are very competitive, possibly pushing Turkey into a situation of cut-throat rivalry. Turkey's traditional export items of textile and food industry products also appeared in the top ten list of Turkey's imports from the EU in 1993, showing the potential competition from the EU.
    3. The failure of certain industries will cause massive layoffs. This might in turn lead to social problems.
    4. Patent laws will cause a rise in the general level of medicine prices, which will in turn make the Government's bill for transfer payments higher.
    5. Increased imports from the EU will widen Turkey's trade gap, raising the Country's need for foreign exchange and depressing the Turkish lira. Continuous depreciation of the lira would make it far more difficult to build economic stability.
    6. If Turkey adopts the Union's common customs tariffs against the rest of the world, it will have removed protection against several countries against which it now protects domestic industries. Turkey may therefore become a concession-granting country while it is now a concession-taking country in international trade.
    7. On the other extreme, Turkey will have to remove the concessions it grants to preferential trading partners. This might mean these countries will have to remove their trade concessions to Turkey.
    8. When Turkey fully adopts common tariffs, it will have imposed a protective wall against the United States and Japan. Under such circumstances these countries might review Turkey's current status as a preferential trading partner.
    9. Since customs union does not mean full membership in the EU, the fact that Turkey will not be represented in the EU's decision making mechanisms means it will not be able to defend its rights and put forward arguments in negotiations.
    10. Turkey will have to remove the mass housing fund (and therefore its receipts) together with customs duties from imports of EU products. This will lead to a major erosion of Turkey's tax receipts, possibly widening fiscal deficits unless corrective measures are introduced.


    Sure of the signature of Customs Union and even Turkish adhesion to the EU, the Ankara Government has decided to take measures for preparing necessary staff for future European posts.
    State Minister Ali Sevki Erek said on February 19 that a European Union Academy will be established within Istanbul University, in order to train Turkish Eurocrats.
    Fore the time being, the academy will provide a four-year education for those who want to become administrators in the public and private sectors that have links with the European Union.


    The Standing Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is expected to debate in London on March 15 the proposal of suspending Turkey from the Council because of its worsening human rights record. The proposal is expected to be sent to the Political Affairs and Legal Affairs Committees.
    The situation in Turkey was already discussed by the Parliamentary Assembly in Strasbourg on January 30 and many members accused the Turkish Government of not having kept its promises on the matter.
    Presenting the Standing Committee's Progress Report to the Assembly, its rapporteur Mr. La Russa regretted very much that sufficient progress had not been achieved by the Turkish authorities in honouring their commitments.
    Dutch socialist Mrs. Baarveld-Schalman informing the Assembly that the Socialist Group decided to request suspending Turkey from the Council of Europe.
    "The Assembly and the Committee of Ministers have been 'very reasonable' to Turkey. The Socialist Group, however, is unwilling to be reasonable any longer, despite Mrs. Ciller's announcement about constitutional change. Behaving reasonably has not resulted in any change in Turkey, in fact the problems there have got worse. Those problems do not just affect that section of the population which calls itself Kurdish. I remember, for example, the report presented by the Committee on the Prevention of Torture, which was shocking literature. Even after the report, however, the Assembly did nothing."
    British socialist Mr. Cox: "Our fellow parliamentary Assembly, the European Parliament, has been scathing in its criticism of Turkey and of the trial [of DEP deputies]. Our colleague from Turkey said, 'Do not push us, we are doing as much as we can', but, with all respect, we have heard that year after year and, sadly, there has been no improvement. If there had been, would those parliamentarians really have stood trial so recently? Time has run out and if, in the next few months, we have no clear evidence of a constitutional change, we should consider whether Turkey has any right to remain a member of this assembly."
    Finnish Left Alliance deputy Mr. Laakso: "The delegation of the Council of Europe visited Turkey last September, under the leadership of our President, Miguel Martinez. I had the opportunity to be in the delegation. We met the Prime Minister and other prominent representatives of Turkey. I admit that I was naive to believe their promises. The Finnish delegation has previously asked for the consideration of the credentials of the Turkish delegation  if that police of promises does not change to the policy of deeds. Until now, I have opposed that, but if that policy of promises is only promises, and if it continues, we must take another type of approach."
    Finnish Social Democrat Mrs. Halonen: "The situation in Turkey is not an easy one, but we have been very patient. We have perhaps been too patient for too long. We have not seen the positive steps for which we have waited. I fully sport the decision that the Socialist Group had made today."


    After hundreds intellectuals persecuted, the State Terrorism has recently taken as target internationally renown writers such as Aziz Nesin and Yasar Kemal.
    As the Ankara State Security Court was ordering prosecutors to open legal proceedings against Aziz Nesin for having published the extracts of Salman Rushdie's Satantic Verses, the Istanbul SSC indicted Yasar Kemal for an article he wrote for the January 10 issue of the German magazine Der Spiegel.
    Yasar Kemal, author of Memed My Hawk, which has sold 600,000 copies around the world, is the only Turkish writer to have been shortlisted for the Nobel Prize for Literature.
    In the said article, Yasar Kemal strongly criticized the Turkish policy on the Kurds and called for an end to the conflict in Southeast Turkey. The Istanbul SSC prosecutor accuses the 72-year old writer of "disseminating separatism".
    After the publication of his article in Der Spiegel, Prime Minister Tansu Ciller resorted to her usual tactics for provoking the public opinion and prosecutors and qualified the author as "vagabond."
    He was officially charged by the Istanbul SSC the under Article 8 of the Anti-Terror Law in court on January 23. Many distinguished Turkish and Kurdish intellectuals accompanied him to court and expressed their solidarity with him.
    In another legal action on February 9, Yasar Kemal was indicted by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda in a collection of essays entitled Freedom of Thought and Turkey.
    The publisher of the book, Erdal Öz too was charged for the book which was confiscated.
    In a letter to Premier Ciller on February 14, PEN American Centre condemned the government's wide application of the Anti-Terror law which has been used in the past year to silence over 100 writers.

    The European Parliament, at its sitting on February 16, 1995, in Strasbourg adopted the following resolution on the charging of Yasar Kemal.
    "The European Parliament,
    "A. whereas, on 13 January 1995, the State Security Court in Istanbul ordered an investigation of the Turkish writer Yasar Kemal and, on 23 January, decided to institute proceedings against him on the grounds of 'separatist propaganda',
    "B. whereas the reason for this action is an article by the aforementioned writer published in the 2 January 1995 edition of the German weekly Der Spiegel, in which he condemned Ankara's crackdown on Turkey's Kurdish minority and criticized the ambivalent tone of the authorities' voice, which is conciliatory towards the West but ruthless within Turkey's own frontiers,
    "C. whereas Turkey is a members of the Council of Europe and has signed and ratified the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights,
    "D. whereas systematic persecution of writers, journalists and intellectuals is continuing under the current Turkish Government,
    "E. whereas the number of people arrested and imprisoned in Turkey for 'the offence of holding a particular opinion' continues to grow,
    "F. whereas, under the Turkish anti-terrorism law, the 'offence of separatist propaganda', with which Yasar Kemal has been charged, is punishable by two to five years' imprisonment and a heavy fine,
    "G. whereas the writer, who is 72 years old, acts as his country's conscience and was imprisoned soon after the military coup in March 1971 for having criticized the social situation in his country,
    "1. Emphatically condemns the charging of Yasar Kemal,
    "2. Considers that the charge of 'separatist propaganda' brought against him is totally unjustified and that the article in Der Spiegel does not contain any objective element which would give grounds for such a charge;
    "3. Considers, therefore, that this action is tantamount to a political trial and constitutes a serious violation of human rights and the right of freedom of expression;
    "4. Deems such proceedings to be unworthy of a country which claims to be democratic and which is associated with the European Union;
    "5. Calls on the Council and the Commission to bring pressure to bear on the Turkish authorities in order to ensure that Turkey shows greater respect for human rights and that all proceedings against the author Yasar Kemal are dropped;
    "6. Recalls and reaffirms its previous resolutions on the human rights situation in Turkey and, in particular, its resolutions of 29 September 1994 and 15 December 1994 on the trial of Turkish Members of Kurdish origin of the Turkish Grand National Assembly."


Yasar Kemal

    One of the greatest tragedies in Turkey's history is happening now. Apart from a couple of hesitant voices, no one is standing up and demanding to know what the Turkish government is doing, what this destruction means. No one is saying: "After all your signatures and promises you are riding towards doomsday, leaving the earth scorched in your wake. What will come of all this?"
    Turkish governments have resolved to drain the pool to catch the fish; to declare all-out war.
    We have already seen how it can be done. The world is also aware of it. Only the people of Turkey have been kept in ignorance; newspapers have been forbidden to write about the drainage. Or maybe there was no need for censorship: maybe our press, with its sense of patriotism and strong nationalist sentiment, chose not to write about it assuming the world would neither hear nor see what was happening. The water was being drained in so horrendous a fashion that the smoke ascended to high heaven. But for our press, deceiving the world and our people — or, rather, believing they had succeeded in doing so — was the greatest act of patriotism, of nationalism. They were not aware that they had perpetrated a crime against humanity. Their eyes bloodshot, their mouths foaming, they were shouting with one voice: "We will not give one stone, one handful of soil." Cries of "Oh God" rose upon the air. Dear loyal patriotic friends, no one wants a single stone, nor a handful of soil from us. Our Kurdish citizens want their language, their language and culture that are being slaughtered.
    Our Kurdish brothers are now at war to win their rights. Those Kurdish brothers with whom we have always been together in sorrow and in joy. During the War of Independence we fought shoulder to shoulder. We established this state together. Should a man cut out the tongue of his brother?
    Oh friend, is there anything in those declarations you signed — the UN Bill of Human Rights, the Council of Europe, the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe and the Helsinki Final Act ¬ to say that if I give my people human rights they will demand their 'independence'? Did you lay down such a condition? In those declarations you signed did it not say that every nation, every ethnic community should determine its own destiny?
    The water has begun to dry up. The houses of nearly 2,000 villages have been burned. Many animals as well as people have been burned inside them. The world press has written about this, as well as our so nationalistic newspapers. Our ostriches still bury their heads in the sand. The country is awash with blood and how can our illustrious media remove its head from the sand? They burnt people too in many houses.
    The draining of the waters has cost Turkey and humanity much. And looks like continuing to do so. Already over 1,700 people have been the victims of murder by persons unknown. Intellectuals in the West have begun to debate whether a new genocide is taking place; the possibility of a Human Rights Court for Turkey's politicians and an economic boycott against Turkey is being discussed. Choose between these delightful alternatives!
    The most horrific aspect is the inhumanity of outright war for the sake of a few fish. They have burnt almost all the forests of eastern Anatolia because guerrillas hide out in them. Turkey's forests have been burning for years. Not much that could be called forest is left and we are burning the remainder to catch fish. Turkey is disappearing in flames along with its forests, anonymous acts of genocide, and 2.5 million people exiled from their homes, their villages burnt, in desperate poverty, hungry and naked, forced to take to the road, and no one raises a finger.
    Turkey's administrators have got so carried away that intellectual crimes have been regarded as among the most serious; people have rotted away in prisons, been killed and exiled for such crimes. Today over 200 people are serving sentences for crimes of thought in our prisons. Hundreds more are on trial. Among these intellectual criminals are university lecturers, journalists, writers and union leaders. Conditions in the prisons are so fearsome that a country, a world, could sink into the earth in shame.
    As if a racist, oppressive regime were not enough, there have been three military coups in 70 years. Each coup has made the Turkish people a little more debased, brought them a little lower. They have rotted from the root, with their culture, their humanity, their language. There is no reason at all for this inhuman, purposeless war in Anatolia. I repeat, the Kurds want nothing but human rights. They want to use their language, to have their identity restored, and develop their culture to the same extent as the Turkish people. You will ask if the Turkish people have these rights themselves. If things continue as they are, it will not be long before we encounter waves of resistance from the Turkish people. These 70 years have crushed all the people of Anatolia like a steamroller; not a blade of grass has grown in its path. For the moment, all we can ask is that all the Anatolian people be granted full human rights.
    These things I speak of have a single cause: to appropriate the liberty of the Anatolian people. This government has done everything it can to exploit the Anatolians, humiliate them and leave them hungry. There is nothing they have not suffered for the last 70 years. If they have managed to survive such a wind for so long, that is because the soil of Anatolia is so rich in culture.
    This world is a graveyard of wrecked languages and cultures. What cultures whose names and reputations we have never even heard have come and gone in this world? As a cultural mosaic, the cultures of Anatolia have been a source of modern cultures. If they had not tried to prohibit and destroy other languages and other cultures than those of the Turkish people, Anatolia would still make major contributions to world culture. And we would not remain as we are; a country half famished, its creative power draining away.
    The sole reason for this war is that cancer of humanity, racism. If this were not so, would it be possible for right-wing, racist magazines and newspapers to declare that "The Turkish race is superior to every other"? The brother of this statement is "Happy is he who calls himself a Turk". I first went to eastern Anatolia in 1951, and saw that on the mountain sides everywhere they had written in enormous letters visi"le from a distance of three, five and 10 kilometres, 'Happy is he who calls himself a Turk". They had embellished the slopes of Mount Ararat, too. The entire mountain had become happy to be Turkish. And, worse even, they made the children declare: "I am a Turk, I am honest, I am hard-working", every morning.
    And much more is happening in Turkey! Having exiled 2.5 million people, now they have put an embargo on food in eastern Anatolia. No one who does not get a certificate from the police station can buy food, because the villagers give food to the guerrillas. The crops, nut and fruit trees of villagers who prefer exile to taking up arms to protect their village from guerrilla attack are burned along with the forests. Their animals are slaughtered. Why are the villages being burned and razed? So that they may not harbour guerrillas and be a source of food for them. From what we hear in Istanbul, the guerrillas receive their needs from the village watchmen. A few days ago the newspapers reported that guerrillas had stolen 700 sheep belonging to the village watchmen, the bastion of the state. There are 50,000 paid watchmen in eastern Anatolia; it is the slave of these people. They are the state in eastern Anatolia, they are everything. They can kill, destroy and burn. They recognise no rule of humanity and no law.
    What else is happening in Turkey? The village elders of Ovacik who said that soldiers had burnt their village were found dead in the burned forests nearby a few days later. The government minister [for human rights] Azimet Köylüoglu who had claimed that soldiers were burning villages went back on his words a few days later: "How can anyone say that the army is burning villages? It is the PKK." And our "free newspapers" reported this.
    What else is happening in Turkey? I swear that the newspapers wrote this too. I was dumbfounded. Listen, in a district of Van they woke up one morning and found the town covered with red crosses. How could the newspapers resist such a piece of news? The SS had done the same.
    And there are no shepherds left in the mountains. They have killed the adult shepherds, and now they send children on the assumption that they won't touch them. But a few days later they gather up the dead bodies of these tiny shepherds from the mountains.
    What else is happening in Turkey? God damn them, one is ashamed of being human. I will write this too. One morning a journalist friend of mine rang. We had worked together as journalists for years. "Do you know what is going on?" he asked. "What?" I replied. "The police have taken away everyone who works for Özgür Gündem newspaper." I immediately went to the newspaper offices and saw that police had cordoned off the building. I asked to go in but the police wouldn't let me. There was no one left to produce the newspaper. They had taken all 120 employees into custody. They had even taken the poor tea boy. If it had been summer they would probably have been ordered to arrest the flies at the newspaper.
    That is enough. I cannot bring myself to talk longer about the historic achievement of the Turkish Republic. To battle against oppression in Turkey today is a challenge not everyone can take up. There is the risk of going hungry. It is a strong tradition in the Turkish Republic to make a mockery of its opponents. And, and, and, it is only at the risk of your life that you oppose the state today. The cost of opposing the Turkish-Kurdish War is heavy. What can we do but keep silent?
    The coup of 12 September 1980 not only forced intellectuals to keep their heads down, not only threw hundreds of thousands of people into prison and tortured them. The entire country cowered in fear, was made degenerate and driven further from humanity. It made informers of ordinary citizens, created bloody wolf-mouthed confessors, and totally destroyed human morality. A country where universal morality has become atrophied is a patient in a coma.
    The Constitution which the leader of the coup Evren Pasha passed in the shadow of his weapons and bayonets was ratified by 90 per cent of the population in a referendum. For exactly 12 years Turkey has been governed according to this Constitution. Yes, Turkey has a parliament. Its parliamentarians are like kittens, even when they catch them by the neck at the door of parliament and take them to prison. There is even a Constitutional Court. A Constitutional Court that, according to the Military Constitution, decides whether a law shall be enforced or not.
    Some people here are scared stiff of the military launching a new coup. What difference does it make? A new coup would not lead to the abolition and repeal of the Evren Constitution.
    There will be no coup. There is no need for a coup.
    Some of my friends, my old journalist colleagues, friends whom I love and who don't want anything to happen anxious. Some say I am taking sides.
    What is more natural than for me to take sides? As long as I can remember I have been on the side of the peoples of Turkey. As long as I can remember I have been on the side of the oppressed, those treated unjustly, the exploited, the suffering and the poor.
    I am on the side of Turkish, the language in which I write. I feel the obligation to do what I can, and what I can't, to enrich and beautify Turkish. My greatest cause of anger against Kenan Pasa is his closure of the Turkish Language Institute.
    Of course I take sides. For me the world is a garden of culture where a thousand flowers grow. Throughout history all cultures have fed one another, been grafted onto one another, and in the process our world has been enriched. The disappearance of a culture is the loss of a colour, a different light, a different source. I am as much on the side of every flower in this thousand flowered garden as I am on the side of my own culture. Anatolia has always been a mosaic of flowers, filling the world with flowers and light. I want it to be the same today.
    If the people of a country choose to live like human beings, choose happiness and beauty, their way lies first through universal human rights and then through universal, unlimited freedom of thought. The people of countries that have opposed this will enter the twenty first century without honour.
    Saving the honour and bread of our country, and the cultural wealth of its soil is in our hands. Either true democracy or...nothing!
*) Index on Censorship, 1/1995, London


    "Turkish security forces are committing human rights violations every day and will continue to do so until the Turkish Government ends its policy of blank denial," Amnesty International said in a report released on February 8, 1995.
    "In an attempt to conceal the scale of human rights violations 1n Turkey the government has prosecuted Turkish human rights defenders, closed down branches of the Turkish Human Rights Association and taken other measures curtailing the freedom of opposition press and political organizations. In September 1994 Amnesty International's researcher on Turkey was forbidden entry to the country."
    "The Turkish Government's policy of denial has led to the increase in torture, 'disappearance' and extrajudicial killings perpetrated with impunity by security forces throughout the country," the 37-page report said.
    "In 1991, there were a "handful of reports" on such 'disappearances' and several more in 1992. In 1993 there were at least 26. In 1994 there were more than 50 reported 'disappearances'.
    "As for extrajudicial executions, there were over 20 such killings in 1991. There were 362 in 1992, over 400 in 1993 and 380 by November 1994.
    "While villagers in the provinces of Southeast Turkey under a state of emergency are still the most frequent victims of violations, the atmosphere of impunity in which soldiers in that area have been allowed to act has spread to police and other security force personnel across the country.
    "Victims of torture are not only suspected political opponents, but those detained for ordinary criminal offenses too. Last December Abdullah Salman, a 13-year-old boy, was wrongly accused of stealing a wallet at his work place. Abdullah was held in police custody for three days during which he was blindfolded, kicked, beaten and subjected to electric shocks."
    In one page devoted to "human rights abuses committed by PKK guerrillas," the teachers and the wives and children of village guards killed by the PKK were mentioned.
    "The increasing number of human rights violations by the security forces 1n the south-east of Turkey has been matched by the actions of the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) which has carried out summary 'executions' and killed civilians during attacks on Kurdish communities believed to support the government. These abuses have continued despite a declaration by the PKK, on December 1994, that 1t would abide by common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions which protects civilians and prisoners. All that suggests that contrary to the assurances given to Amnesty International, the PKK has established the murder of civilians as open policy," says the report.
    At the end of the report are pictures and stories of eight Kurdish activists and one Turkish teacher who have been either allegedly tortured by the Turkish security forces, killed by the PKK or simply "disappeared" and never heard from again. 
    In its report, Amnesty International makes a number of specific recommendations for urgent measures that the Turkish Government could immediately take to address systematic human rights violations.
    The human rights organization is also calling on the international community to translate its expressions of concern at escalating human rights violations in Turkey into appropriate action by organizations such as the OSCE and the United Nations.
    "In November 1994, a joint statement by the European Union with Austria, Finland, Norway and Sweden at the Conference on Security and Cooperation (CSCE) Review Conference in Budapest, urged Turkey to invite a CSCE mission to look at the human rights situation 1n the country and to make proposals for reform. Turkey has so far refused to accept such a mission.
    "Members of the international community should also ensure that transfers of military and security equipment do not contribute to human rights violations. Amnesty International has received reports that armoured vehicles, helicopters and other aircraft have been used in security force operations 1n Southeast Turkey when human rights violations were committed. In several cases, people who have since 'disappeared' were last seen being taken away 1n helicopters by the security forces. France, Germany, Russia,  the United Kingdom and the United States are among the countries which supply such types of equipment to Turkey.
    "We are urging governments which authorize the supply of military and security equipment to Turkey to ensure such supplies are not used to commit human rights violations. If they do not not receive and monitor such guarantees, governments should halt their transfers," Amnesty International said.


    US State Department human rights report, released in Washington on February 2, 1995. provides a comprehensive chronicle of alleged human rights abuses by Turkish authorities in 1994. The 36-page section in the report on Turkey includes, on the basis of findings provided by US. diplomats in Ankara and other Turkish cities, that "the human rights situation in Turkey worsened significantly in 1994."
    "Despite the Ciller government's pledge in 1993 to end torture and to establish a state of law based on respect for human rights, torture and excessive use of force by security personnel persisted throughout 1994," the report says in its introductory section.
    "The police and security forces often employed torture during periods of incommunicado detention and interrogation and continued to use excessive force against non-combatants (in the fight against the PKK)," the report adds.
    "Various agencies of the government continued to harass, intimidate, indict and imprison human rights monitors, journalists, lawyers and professors for ideas which they expressed in public forums.
    "Disappearances and mystery murder cases continued at a high rate in the Southeast. The PKK and the radical Islamic Hezbollah (not related to the Lebanese Hizbullah) appear responsible in some cases. In other cases, however, the evidence implicated government security forces.
    "In many human rights cases, the targets of abuses were ethnic Kurds or their supporters. Moreover, the government infrequently prosecutes police or security officers for extrajudicial killings, torture and other abuses, in the cases which produce a conviction, lenient sentences were usually given. The resulting climate of impunity that has been created probably remains the single largest obstacle to reducing unlawful killing, torture and other human rights abuses," the report concludes on this subject.
    The 36 pages devoted to Turkey in this year's report was surpassed only by the 39 pages devoted to China. The report devotes only 16 pages to human rights violations in Syria, 23 pages to Serbia, 29 pages to Russia. 32 pages to Israel and the occupied territories, l7 pages to Iran, 26 pages to Iraq and 26 pages to Greece.
    John Shattuck, assistant secretary for democracy, human rights and labor, during his introductory remarks at a State Department briefing, said countries like China, Iraq. Iran Burma, North Korea and Cuba were engaged in "flagrant and systematic abuses of basic human rights."
    But he noted that such flagrant abuses were not limited only to authoritarian governments. "Torture, arbitrary detention or repression of free speech and dissent existed in a wide variety of other governments, for example Saudi Arabia, Egypt, India, Guatemala and Turkey."
    Dealing with "Respect for the integrity of the person including freedom from political and other extrajudicial killings" in Turkey. the report says in categorical terms that "Government authorities were responsible for the deaths of detainees in official custody, suspects in houses raided by security forces; and other types of civilian deaths in the Southeast."
    Indicating that under Turkish law authorities are obliged to investigate all deaths in police custody, the report says that prosecution of security force members for such deaths is rare.
    "Despite the Constitution's ban on torture, Turkey's accession to the UN and European conventions against torture, and public pledges of successive governments to end torture, the practice continued. Human rights attorneys and physicians who treat victims of torture state that most persons charged with or suspected of political crimes usually suffer some torture during the period of incommunicado detention in police stations and gendarmerie headquarters before they are brought to a court."
    According to the report, the commonly employed methods of torture in Turkey reported by the Turkish Human Rights Foundation include: "high-pressure cold water hoses, electric shock, beating on the soles of the feet, beating of the genitalia, hanging by the arms, blindfolding, sleep deprivation, deprivation of clothing, systematic beatings, and vaginal and anal rape with truncheons and, in some instances, gun barrels."
    "In south-eastern Turkey, a security official boasted of having deprived a suspect of sleep for six days to obtain a confession," the report said.
    Pointing out that Turkey recognizes the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights and the European Commission of Human Rights, the report says Turkish citizens may file complaints alleging violations of the European Convention on Human Rights with the Commission. It adds that there are currently 250 cases before the Commission.
    The report goes on to say that there is no guaranteed attorney access under law for persons whose case falls under the jurisdiction of the State Security Court. These cases include those charged with smuggling and with crimes under the anti-terrorism law.
    "Attorneys and human rights organizations affirm that this lack of access is a major factor in the continuing, widespread use of torture by police and security forces. The decision concerning access to council in such cases is left to the independent prosecutor, who generally denies access," the report says.
    Referring to the activities of the State Security Courts (DGM) the report says the following:
    "In 1994, State Security Courts predominantly handled cases under the anti-terrorism law. The state claims these courts were established to try efficiently those suspected of certain crimes. In fact, the law provides that those accused of crimes falling under the jurisdiction of these courts may be detained twice as long before arraignment as other dependents and the courts may hold closed hearings and may admit testimony obtained during police interrogations in the absence of council."
    Dealing with "Respect for the integrity of the person, including freedom from use of expressive force and violations of humanitarian law in internal conflicts" in Turkey, the report says that "the PKK's campaign of violence in Southeast Turkey is directed against both security forces and civilians, most of whom are Kurds, whom the PKK accuses of co-operating with the state.
    "The Turkish National Police, Gendarmerie and Armed Forces in turn have waged an increasingly intense campaign to suppress terrorism, targeting active PKK units as well as those they believe support or sympathize with the PKK, and committing many human rights abuses in the process.
    "On March 26, a Turkish Air Force plane bombed up to four villages in Sirnak province, killing approximately 20 persons, according to press reports. Journalists were not allowed into the area."
    "Section 2 of the report on Turkey goes on to deal with "Respect for civil liberties, including freedom of speech and press."
    Touching in detail on the trials and conviction of the pro-Kurdish deputies of the former Democracy Party (DEP), the State Department reports also highlights the cases of trade union Chairman Münir Ceylan, journalist Haluk Gerger, academic Dr. Fikret Baskaya and former Diyarbakir Mayor Mehdi Zana — all convicted to prison sentences for expressing their views in writing or otherwise.
    It goes on to quote Turkish government figures and says 407 newspapers, 490 periodicals and 35 books were confiscated in the first nine months of 1994.
    It indicated that while legislation has partially removed the ban on the use of the Kurdish language, Kurdish language broadcasts are still illegal.
    "President Süleyman Demirel stated that Kurdish television and education would constitute concessions to terrorists and should be allowed only after terrorism ends," the report says. Indicating that the "pro-PKK" daily ÖzgUr Gündem" had been harassed consistently since its April l992 inception, the State Department report says the following of the Turkish press coverage of the situation in the Southeast:
    "Turkish press coverage of the situation in the Southeast tended to be unreliable underreporting in some instances and grossly sensationalizing in others. Government decree 430 requires self-censorship of all news reporting from or about the Southeast and upon the request of the regional governor, gives the Interior Ministry the authority to ban distribution of any news viewed as misrepresenting events in the region. In the event such a government warning is not obeyed, the decree provides for a 10-day suspension of operations for a first offence and 30 days for subsequent offences."
    The State Department goes on in its report to touch upon the demonstrations during the year by Turkish civil servants seeking union rights and said one of these demonstrations was dispersed by the police "through kicking and the use of truncheons." Also touching upon religious freedoms, the report says the following regarding the Alawis:
    "Turkey's Alawi Muslim minority (an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam) is estimated to number at least l2 million. There are, however, no government-paid Alawi religious leaders, no Religious Affairs Directorate Funds go to the Alawi community, and some Alawis allege informal discrimination in the form of failure to include any Allawi doctrines or beliefs in religious instruction classes. Alawis are disgruntled by what they regard as the Sunni bias in the Religious Affairs Directorate and the Directorate's tendency to view the Alawis as a cultural group rather than a religious sect."
    Referring to the governmental attitude regarding groups or organizations investigating human rights allegations, the report says: "Government agents have increasingly harassed human rights monitors, as well as lawyers and doctors involved in documenting human rights violations."
    It says that since 1991 the Turkish Parliament has had a human rights commission but adds that this commission has been "inactive and ineffective."
    "While representatives of diplomatic missions who wish to monitor the state of human rights in Turkey are free to speak with private citizens, security officials may have an intimidating effect upon those interviewed," the report says.


    After the closure of the Democracy Party (DEP) and the imprisonment of its eight deputies, those DEP deputies who fled Turkey took the initiative for founding a Kurdistan Parliament-in-exile.
    At a press conference held on January 12 in Brussels, the organizers of the parliament-in-exile said: "None of the four occupying states or their parliaments have ever represented the will of the Kurdish people. The Turkish Grand National Assembly is nothing more than a Turkicizing assembly which sanctions the genocide in Kurdistan and is in reality run by generals. The MPs elected by our people are either in graves, dungeons, or in exile. Our people who are in exile will, by electing their own representatives, express their right to self determination with their own parliament."
    The committee organizing the election of the Kurdistan Parliament-in-exile is composed of the DEP deputies in exile Remzi Kartal, Mahmut Kilic, Ali Yigit; DEP Honorary Chairman Yasar Kaya, ERNK Representative Ali Sapan, former Yüksekova  Mayor Necdet Buldan and the representatives of some Assyrian, Yezidi and Alawi organizations in Europe.
    According to press reports, first of all a Kurdistan National Congress is expected to be held on March 21 (Kurdish new year Newroz) in a European city with the participation of the delegates representing peoples of Kurdistan. This congress will in turn elect a 85-member Kurdistan Parliament-in-exile. The parliament, in turn, will elect the Kurdish government-in-exile.
    The Turkish Government has immediately reacted against this new Kurdish project and asked its Western allies to block any attempts to form a Kurdish parliament on their soil.


    Mrs. Leyla Zana, one of the DEP deputies who was sentenced to 15 year imprisonment, has written a letter to French president Mitterrand requesting his support for a dialogue between Kurds and Turks aimed at instituting peace and enhancing democracy within the present borders of Turkey.
    In her letter, dated February 9, Zana said: "Our endeavour and desire to stop the bloodshed and establish peace will continue if all democratic ways are blocked. Our effort is for creating a Turkey where all the barriers to freedom of expression are lifted, where young people do not get killed, briefly a Turkey with a smiling, contemporary and happy people.
    "We call on the western democracies not only to watch the tragedy of our people but to initiate a process of peace and dialogue that would contribute to stopping the bloodshed and tears. We believe that Turkey could be a stable, reliable and strong ally if only it had a functional democracy and internal peace."


    The new discipline regulations in secondary education allowing the Disciplinary Council to subject female student to virginity test has sparked a big protest in Turkey.
    Article 17 of the new regulations published in the Official Gazette on January 31 includes a provision which states that "in cases of proven dishonesty or an attack on someone's honour, the student can be expelled from the school and banned from entering any other Ministry of Education School."
    Education Minister Nevzat Ayaz said at a TV programme on February 8 that the article in question only targets female students and the Disciplinary Council.
    Many parents have immediately reacted saying they were the only ones responsible for their children's honour, not a discipline council.
    Women's groups and many teachers said that this was not acceptable and was a violation of human rights. They also argued that such practices would psychologically scar a female student for life.
    This scandalous debate created by an age-old mentality was like a confirmation of the US State Department's human rights report for 1994 which stated that Turkish police force women in custody to undergo virginity testing.
    In 1992, two female students committed suicide after being forced to have virginity tests.


    Two of the three social democrat parties of Turkey,  the Republican People's Party (CHP) and the Social Democrat Populist Party (SHP) finally decided on February 18 to merge under the roof of the CHP.
    According to the merger protocol adopted by the respective congresses of the two parties, the Republican People's Party (CHP) emerged as a new party having extended administrative organs comprising the members of each side.
    The former Foreign Minister Hikmet Cetin was unanimously elected party chairman as the only candidate.
    Although this is billed as the "merger" of two left-wing parties but in essence it was the closure of the SHP, partner in the coalition government, and its joining an opposition party. 
    After the disappearance of its left wing, Ciller's coalition government is expected to be confronted with many problems in coming days.
    Firstly, the former CHP has been one of the most ardent critics of the prime minister and her coalition government.
The new CHP has to prove itself to the voters and show that it will not commit the same old mistakes as the SHP which had to give up all its social democratic ideals and bow to the DYP simply to remain in power.
    Secondly, Chairman of the new CHP, Hikmet Cetin had last year been forced by Ciller to resign as foreign minister in a very humiliating and degrading manner.
    Beside his personal disappointment as regards Premier Ciller, Hikmet Cetin know well that Bülent Ecevit's Democratic Left Party (DSP) has gained over many left-wing voters at the cost of the SHP and the CHP. He is also aware that CHP's former leader Deniz Baykal has set his sights on the CHP leadership and will now wait for Cetin to make mistakes to topple him in the new CHP's convention to be held in August.
    Therefore Cetin is expected to be more assertive in his new position if the new CHP decides to remain in the government.


    The war within the Turkish Mafia has gained a political dimension implicating the family of the late President of the Republic Turgut Özal, after the assassination of the daughter of a notorious godfather by a man of another godfather., Alaaddin Cakici.
    The victim of the murder committed at a Uludag hotel in Bursa on January 22 is Ugur Cakici, the daughter of Dündar Kilic. She was assassinated by the order of Alaaddin Cakici, a rival godfather to whom she had been married for a certain time.
    Dündar Kilic claimed that the family of the late President Turgut Özal is behind the murder.
    The feud between Kilic and Cakici started after an attempt on the life of former Emlakbank director general Engin Civan. According to press reports, Civan, who was considered by the press as one of the Turgut Özal's "princes" had received a $5 million bribe from businessman Selim Edes with the promise of delivering a substantial loan, but failed to keep his promise.     After this incident, Dündar Kilic claimed that the Özal family members, wife Semra Özal, daughter Zeynep Özal and sons Ahmet and Efe Özal, are also implicated in the bribery affairs and asked the "intervention" of Kilic and Cakici clans to threaten Engin Civan.
    Özal's son, Ahmet Özal, owner of a private TV Channel, Kanal 6, has reportedly often asked Aladdin Cakici's service to force another bank, Bankekspres, to reduce his $5 million debt to a reasonable level. This adds weight to the argument that behind Engin Civan's shooting lies an attempt to save Kanal 6 from financial problems.
    Dündar Kilic's daughter, Ugur Cakici testimonied to the press that Mrs. Semra Özal had personally called herself and asked such an "intervention."
    Thereupon, according to Dündar Kilic, Ahmet Özal told Cakici, who is also known as an ardent supporter of the Grey Wolves: "Let us do whatever is required to prevent my mother from being taken to the police station." Cakici called his former wife and told her, "I had given my word to mother Özal to keep the alleged Edes-Özal-Cakici connection in the shooting and wounding of Engin Civan secret. Why did you make such statements to the press?"
    Finally, Ugur Kilic paid the price of his testimony with her life.
    According to Milliyet of February 15, Dursun Kilic set five "death teams" on the trail of his ex son-in-law Alaaddin Cakici, to punish him for the murder of his daughter. The "death teams", each consisting of two men, are making the rounds in Britain, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and France, trying to find Cakici.
    On the other hand, Hürriyet's grand reporter Ugur Dündar revealed in a series of TV programmes the secret accounts in Swiss banks belong to Engin Civan and to the Özal family members.


    The wealthiest prime minister of the world, Tansu Ciller was accused by the main opposition ANAP to conceal the real volume of her wealth in the United States.
    Deputy Chairman of the ANAP parliamentary group revealed on February 3 the outcome of an investigation which was carried out by the US law firm Kaye Scholer.
    According to the report, besides the two pieces of real estate the Ciller family declared in their official statements, they possessed three other properties which were registered in the name of the company CGD Incorporated they owned in the United States.
    The three properties reportedly consist of a 123-room hotel, a shopping centre and an 18-story building.
    The sum of the assets of the Ciller family in the United States is nearly $4.7 million . In her official statement dated January 20, the prime minister had declared that she had a sum of $270,000 worth of assets.
    Quoting Ciller as stating that she had purchased the assets in the US with $925,000 she had transferred from Turkey through official means, Asik said that statement did not reflect the truth, because the sum of the money paid for the purchase of those assets had reached $3.9 million and that an additional $1.1 million had been spent for the repair of those properties. He claimed that foreign currency had been smuggled outside of Turkey for the purchase of the assets totalling more than $4.5 million.
    Asik also alleged that the source indicated for the $925,000 was doubtful. He said that the MARSAN firm, which the Ciller family showed as the source for the $925,000, had not paid any tax to the state between 1987 and 1990 and that it only paid a tax of TL 23 million between 1991 and 1993.
    On the other hand, according to an investigation undertaken by the Finance Ministry, in the origin of Prime Minister's wealth are many irregularities of his husband Özer Ucaran Ciller. When Mr. Ciller was he general manager of the Istanbul Bank he transferred considerable sums to the MARSAN Holding that the Ciller family owns. Due to Mr. Ciller's irregularities the Istanbul Bank went bankrupt with outstanding debts of TL50 billion. The report describes the transfer of funds to MARSAN as being carried out with "evil intention and deliberately."
    In Ciller's biography published in Britannica Yearbook 1994 it was disclosed that she had "amassed a fortune of some sixty million dollars through real estate speculations."


    4.1, a police team raiding the IHD Mersin office confiscates many publications and 300 exemplaries of a new year calendar prepared by the association.
    6.1, the mayor of the Rize city, Sevki Yilmaz (RP) is indicted by the Istanbul SSC prosecutor for his electoral speeches.
    6.1, in Mardin, the headman of the Kocasirt Village, Cemil Bingöl who kidnapped one day ago is found assassinated.
    7.1, in Kigi (Bingöl), security forces opening fire on a minibus shoot dead Hasan Akdemir and wound six other passengers.
    8.1, in Batman, Sirin Karabay is stabbed to death by unidentified assailants.
    8.1, in Kurtalan, Abdülmecit Yildiz, Medeni Yildiz and an unidentified woman fall victim of the explosion of a mine laid by security forces as they are going to Siirt on a tractor.
    9.1, in Diyarbakir, Yildiz Aytek is assassinated with an axe by unidentified murders.
    10.1, in Sason, Selahattin Aygül is found assassinated.
    11.1, in Mazgirt, two children are killed at explosion when they are playing with a bomb they found in the street.
    11.1, unidentified gunmen shoot dead Zagir Balan in Batman and Izzettin Gönce in Diyarbakir.
    12.1, IHD Chairman Akin Birdal and four other human rights activists are tried by the Ankara SSC for their speeches during the Human Rights' Week celebrations in 1992. Each faces imprisonment of up to five years for separatist propaganda and instigation to hostility.
    12.1, in Diyarbakir, a police team raiding a house shoots dead four university students: Hüseyin Deniz, Refik Horoz, Havva Ipek and Selim Yesilova. The witnesses say that these students have never been involved in political activities and accuse the police of having executed them arbitrarily.
    12.1, in Adana, unidentified assailants raiding a café shot dead Bahattin Oguz and wound six other people. Same day, in Nusaybin, Serif Kaplan is shot dead by unidentified gunmen.
    14.1, in Urfa, three persons are detained after a police raid on a house.
    16.1, the IHD Ankara Section, at a press conference, accuses the police of having tortured a 12-year old girl, D.T., who was held under custody for five days after being arrested on January 12 in Cubuk on charges of having stolen a roll of bread.
    16.1, about 200 people protesting against the disappearance Ismail Bahceci after his arrest are dispersed by police using force. Some demonstrators are wounded and fifteen people are taken into police custody.
    16.1, security forces have reportedly detained 17 people in Izmir for pro-PKK activities.
    17.1, in Batman, HADEP official Zeki Adlig is assassinated by two unidentified gunmen.
    17.1, The Communication Workers' Trade Union (Tüm Haber Sen) Chairman Ismail Cinar, Secretary General Metin Kocan and 23 other trade union officials in Istanbul are banished to eastern provinces for having called PTT employees to a sit-in on December 20, 1994. When the PTT employees start a protest action against this decision, police disperse them by using force. Beside, nine employees are taken into custody.
    17.1, a team of gendarmes opening fire on a minibus in Tarsus shoots dead driver Mustafa Sari.
    17.1, in Diyarbakir, Mutlu Demir is shot dead by unidentified gunmen.
    18.1, security forces have reportedly arrested eight people during their operations in Ankara.
    19.1, the Ankara Prosecutor opens a legal proceeding against 35 people including Greenpeace activists for having carried out a demonstration in Ankara in protest again the construction of a nuclear central in Akkuyu (Sinop). Nine foreigners including Greenpeace Mediterranean Coordinator Mario Damato and 26 Turkish national face prison terms of up to three years each by virtue of contravening the Law on Meetings and Demonstrations.
    20.1, Garip Aygün and his wife Sultan Aygün who were detained on January 18 for a traffic accident claim to have been tortured by police. The traces of torture are certified by the Legal Medicine.
    21.1, in Izmir, security forces arrest fifteen alleged members of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Turkey (TDKP).
    22.1, political prisoner Süleyman Öngün who was wounded during a quarrel with security officers at the Diyarbakir Prison on October 3, 1994, died at the infirmary of the Gaziantep Prison to where he was transferred after the incidents. Accusing the prison authorities of not having taken care of Öngün, other political detainees at the prison start a hunger strike.
    23.1, the Diyarbakir SSC begins to try 30 people accused of belonging to the fundamentalist organization Hizbullah and having committed political murders. 21 defendants face capital punishment and nine others imprisonment of up to 20 years.
    23.1, carrying out an operation in the Kurdish quarters of Adana, security forces detain more than 20 people.
    23.1, in Diyarbakir, Garibe Can is assassinated with an axe by unidentified assailants.
    24.1, the Ankara SSC sentences three youths to 12 years and six months in prison each for Dev-Sol activities.
    24.1, the trial of two German nationals, Andreas Günter Landwern and Karen Braum, accused of carrying documents for the PKK, starts at the Istanbul SSC. Although released at the first sitting after a 3-month detention, two Germans will be tried with the demand of imprisonment of up to five years.
    25.1, in Ankara, security forces arrest seven people for Dev-Yol activities.
    25.1, in Samsun, twelve of sixteen people detained for Dev-Sol activities are placed under arrest by a tribunal.
    26.1, unidentified assailants assassinate Halfe Ökzür in Gaziantep and Nesat Vanli in Diyarbakir.
    30.1, in Adana, a 21-year old woman, Adile Atabay claims to have been tortured by police for three days after being detained on January 22 during a raid on her house.
    30.1, in Batman, HADEP official Vasif Cetin is assassinated by unidentified gunmen. HADEP Provincial Chairman Mehmet Salih Altun says that in last one month in Batman eight people fell victim of the assassinations and none of the murders was identified.
    31.1, in Bodrum, Mehmet Arslan claims to have been tortured after being detained on January 24 together with his fiancee. The traces of torture were certified by the legal medicine.
    31.1, in Mersin, during repressive operations at the Kurdish quarters, police shoot dead Fesih Akburak and Suat Yildiz.
    31.1, the Izmir SSC places under arrest 19 out of 30 people taken into custody by police in January for taking part in the activities of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Turkey (TDKP).
    1.2, in Adana, a woman named Behiye Demir claims to have been tortured after her detention on January 30.
    1.2, in Gaziantep, an administrative proceeding is started against 250 teachers for having participated in a protest action on December 29, 1994.
    1.2, in Izmir, a doctor of the Atatürk State Hospital, Senol Varnali is beaten and wounded by a group of gendarmes headed by a sergeant for having parked his car in a place reserved to security forces.
    2.2, in Balikesir, worker Enver Zambak claims to have been tortured after his detention on January 29. He says that his son Sait Zambak, who has not been released, was also subjected to torture.
    2.2, in Mersin, security forces detain 40 people during a series of repressive operations in the Kurdish quarters. Many of the detainees are the parents of Fesih Akburak and Suat Yildiz who were shod dead on January 31.
    3.2, in Izmir, 93 people holding a protest action at the SHP building in solidarity with their parents on hunger strike at the Buca Prison are taken into custody.
    4.2, the dead body of an unidentified person, reportedly strangled, is found in Batman.
    5.2, in Aydin, police announce the arrest of nine alleged PKK militants.
    5.2, in Batman, Chairman of the Municipal Workers' Trade Union (Belediye-Is), Osman Küntes, and his son are kidnapped by unidentified assailants
    6.2, after a six-year trial, 16 police officers, accused of having shot dead four people on October 7, 1988, in Tuzla, are acquitted by an Istanbul High Criminal Court.
    6.2, the Ankara SSC starts to try nine people for having participated in Dev-Sol actions. Four of the defendants face capital punishment and the others imprisonments of up to 20 years.
    6.2, in Istanbul, unidentified gunmen open fire on a group of workers carrying out a strike in a depot and wound two workers. Three weeks earlier, another worker was wounded by unidentified gunmen. The workers accused the employer, who is known as a member of the Nationalist Action Party (MHP), neo-fascist, of having these Grey Wolves attacks for intimidating the strikers.
    7.2, in Nevsehir, taxi driver Güner Karatas claims to have been tortured after his detention on January 21. The fact of torture is certified by legal medicine.
    9.2, a former victim of torture, Mazlum Sarisaltik is detained in Tunceli. His lawyer, reminding that his client was, as a torture victim, treated by the Rehabilitation Centre of the Human Rights Association (TIHV) in Izmir, says his life might be in danger if he is subjected to torture for a second time.
    9.2, in last ten days, security forces have taken into custody 27 people for pro-PKK activities.
    11.2, in Kastamonu, 16 people are detained for Dev-Sol in relation to Dev-Sol activities.
    11.2, in Diyarbakir, a woman named Türkan Sert is assassinated with an axe.
    13.2, in Izmir, worker Dursun Yildiz claims to have been tortured after being detained on February 8 together with a group of cargo workers carrying out a protest action. The fact of torture is certified by legal medicine.
    14.2, Islamist Mahmut Kacar who publicly contested the official ceremony commemorating Atatürk on November 10, 1994, at the Mausoleum, is sentenced by a penal court in Ankara to four years and six months in prison. During his interrogation Kacar said to have been tortured at the Ankara Police Headquarters.
    16.2, two workers, Tekin Aktas and Tekin Atalay claims to have been tortured after being detained during a strike at a cargo company. The torture practice on them are certified by legal medicine.
    16.2, the trial of 35 people accused of having carried out a Greenpeace demonstration in Ankara in protest again the construction of a nuclear central in Akkuyu (Sinop) starts at a penal court in Ankara. Nine foreigners including Greenpeace Mediterranean Coordinator Mario Damato and 26 Turkish national face prison terms of up to three years each by virtue of contravening the Law on Meetings and Demonstrations.
    19.2, in Malatya, the Association of Haci Bektas-i Veli is attacked by unidentified assailants.
    19.2, security forces, during a series of repressive operations, detain HADEP Iskenderun chairman Hayrettin Yilmaz and 16 other people.
    20.2, the chairman of the Socialist Power Party (SIP), Aydemir Güler is tried by the Istanbul SSC Prosecutor  by virtue of Article 312 of the TPC. Accused of inciting to the people to hatred and hostility on the basis of racial and regional differences, Güler faces a prison term of up to three years.
    20.2, in Van, Halil Benek, Halit Benek, Halime Benek and Ömer Bora are placed under arrest by a tribunal for pro-PKK activities. The accused, detained on January 25, claim to have been tortured during police custody.
    21.2, in Batman, unidentified gunmen shoot dead a 45-year old woman named Nimet Bal.
    22.2, the Council of Ministers suspends the strike of airline workers for sixty days on grounds that this worker action might harm the expedition of soldiers to the emergency law region and the pilgrimage to Mecca.
    23.2, more than 2,000 airline workers in Istanbul staged a mass demonstration in protest against the suspension of their strike.
    23.2, in Istanbul, eight people are taken into custody for having participated in the IBDA-C activities.
    23.2, five people were wounded during a skirmish between right and left wing students at the Inönü University in Malatya.
    23.2, in Bursa, police detain 15 youths during a demonstration by high school students in protest against administrative pressures at schools.
    24.2, ten people were wounded during a skirmish between right and left wing students at Faculty of Letters, History and Geography of the Ankara University.
    25.2, in Istanbul, 15-year old Bülent Erdönmez, who was wounded and detained on February 15 during a skirmish between right and left-wing students before the Vefa High School, claims to have been tortured for 48 hours at the police station.
    25.2, in Iskenderun, HADEP chairman Hayrettin Yilmaz and 12 other people are placed under arrest by a tribunal.
    25.2, in Batman, three women, Sabahat Izmir, Ayse Sahin and Aliye Narin, are wounded at the explosion of a bomb placed by unidentified people.
    26.2, in Istanbul, Kazim Gedik, Kasim Genc and Meral Balikci, who were detained on February 25 during a raid on a cafeteria, claim to have been tortured by police.
    26.2, police announce the arrest of eleven alleged Dev-Sol militants in Gebze.
    27.2, IHD Diyarbakir Office is again raided by police and four IHD members as well as an employee are taken into police dustody.
    28.2, in Izmir, three cargo workers carrying on a protest action, Fikret Dinler, Mustafa Erol and Orhan Polat are taken to custody. After their release, the workers claim to have been tortured at police station.

    Özgür Ülke, the only daily newspaper openly defending the rights of the Kurdish people and disclosing the atrocity of the state security forces in the Turkish Kurdistan, was definitively closed down on February 4 by a court decision.
    A penal court of Istanbul decided on February 2 that "Özgür Ülke was the continuation of the now defunct Özgür Gündem and that therefore its publication violated the Press Law."
    The said law says that "any publication that is clearly a continuation of a publication that was shut down by court order is banned from publication and will be confiscated."
    The penal court stated that there are 24 closure decisions against Özgür Gündem. These decisions add up to closure for more than a year. This decision being in effect to shut down Özgür Ülke, editor in chief Baki Karadeniz  announced on February 4 that "the newspaper was put in the position of no longer being able to function."
    In the history of the Turkish press, Özgür Ülke (Özgür Gündem) is the newspaper that holds the unapproachable record of seized copies and sentencings.
    Only in 1994, 102 out of 104 issues of Özgür Gündem published until April 14 were confiscated by the State Security Court. As for Özgür Ülke, 220 out of its 247 issues were confiscated as well.
    On December 2, Özgür Ülke Istanbul and Ankara offices were destroyed by bomb explosions following Prime Minister Ciller's confidential directive to state authorities to silence this newspaper whatsoever be the cost.
    Recently, following a decision of the National Security Council, almost each issue of Özgür Gündem was confiscated at the printing house before the distribution. The issue was reprinted with blank columns carrying "Censored" stamp in the place of the original article, but the security forces, considering it a new crime, confiscated it as well.
    Many journalists of Özgür Gündem/Ülke have been assassinated, detained or sentenced to heavy prison terms and unpayable fines. More than 20 journalists or workers of Özgür Ülke are still in prison. Even the distributors and sellers of the newspaper have become target of assassinations or harassments.
    The following are the recent examples of these practices:
    4.1, Diyarbakir correspondent of the daily Özgür Ülke, Salih Güler is taken into custody by a police team.
    16.1, Özgür Ülke Mardin correspondents Hüsnü Akgül and Hidayet Pehlivan are taken into custody during a police raid on the newspaper's local office.
    19.1, Özgür Ülke Diyarbakir correspondent Ismail Hakki Kelleci is taken into police custody.
    24.1, Özgür Ülke Van office is raided by a police team and correspondent Dogan Denizhan taken into custody.
    30.1, Özgür Ülke Diyarbakir correspondent Salih Güler, detained on January 4, says after his release that he was subjected to torture. Besides, Özgür Ülke Diyarbakir office is again raided by police and five correspondents, Zekine Türkeri, Vedat Percin, Adil Denk, Mehmet Emin Alagöz and Cengiz Kirik are taken into custody. After their release on February 2, these journalists claim to have been tortured at police centre.
    9.2, Özgür Ülke Agri office is raided by police and two persons inside are taken into custody.


    The closure of Özgür Ülke and other publications have created a world-wide reaction and many organisations sent protest messages to the Turkish Government.
    The Committee To Protect Journalists in New York, in a message to Prime Minister Ciller on February 27, said:
    "The CPJ is alarmed by apparent trend in the silencing of non-mainstream publications in Turkey. Four days after the court decision banning the publication of Özgür Ülke newspaper, two other publications, Denge Azadi and Kurtulus, were informed by the authorities that they could not publish because they are successors to publications which have been shut down temporarily by courts. This is the same reasoning used against Özgür Ülke to shut it down on February 2.
    "The left-wing weekly Kurtulus was accused of being the continuation of Mücadele magazine, which stopped its publication last October, because the writers who worked for the latter are working for the former, the addresses of both magazines' bureaus are the same and the editorial line of Kurtulus resembles the line advocated by Mücadele.
    "The same 'evidence' was cites in the decision against the pro-Kurdish weekly Denge-Azadi (claiming it was continuing Azadi, which disbanded last May) and Özgür Ülke.
    "If this reasoning is applied to all formerly closed publications, journalists who used to work for such publications are in effect banned from working in publications with similar editorial lines.
    "As a non-partisan organization of journalists dedicated to upholding press freedom world-wide, we view the suspension of Kurtulus and Denge-Azadi magazines as a flagrant violation of the right to 'seek, receive, an impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers,' guaranteed by Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the United Nations, as well as a violation of the Turkish Constitution."


    The Court of Cassation ratified on January 15, a total of six years in prison and TL 750 million in fine against sociologist Ismail Besikci.
    Besikci had been sentenced by the State Security Court for his three books: On the Kurdish Community, The Ismail Besikci Trial 1 and An Intellectual, An Organization and The Kurdish Question.
    With these new punishments, the total of the ratified prison terms against Besikci has reached to 22 years and 6 months and the fines to TL 1 billion 850 million. He is purging his punishments at the Ankara Prison.
    With the pending punishments, Besikci's total prison term rises to 67 years and one month, and the total fine to TL 5 billion 24 million.
    The Court of Cassation also ratified a 18-month imprisonment and a fine of TL 150 million against Yurt Publishing House director Ünsal Öztürk who published Besikci's three books. With this new sentence, Ünsal's total prison term rises to four years. Ünsal has been in prison since November 23, 1994.


    6.1, in Istanbul, unidentified assailants throw a bomb to the editorial house of the daily Hürriyet.
    6.1, the weekly Newroz N°43 is confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
    7.1, the responsible editor of the periodical Stêrka Rizgari, Mete Demirkol is put under arrest by the decision of the Istanbul SSC.
    7.1, the publisher of the periodical Devrimci Emek, Yilmaz Eksi is imprisoned in Istanbul for not having paid the fines to which he was sentenced.
    9.1, the periodicals Taraf N°31, Gercek N°45, Newroz N°44 and Denge Azadi N°34 are confiscated by the Istanbul SSC.
    11.1, two officials of the Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (TIHV), Chairman Yavuz Önen and administrative board member Fevzi Argun, and three officials of the Human Rights Association (IHD), Chairman Akin Birdal, Vice-Chairman Sedat Arslantas and administrative board member Erol Anar, are acquitted by the Ankara SSC. They were accused of separatist propaganda in two booklets, on the torture practices and the burned villages, published by their organizations, according to Article 8 of the Anti-Terror Law. However, the SSC asks the Public prosecutor to open a new case against Birdal, Öndül and Arslantas according to Article 159 of the Turkish Penal Code for the same books. If accepted, three officials will be tried by a criminal court for having insulted State security forces.
    11.1, a special issue of the periodical Kizilbayrak on trade unions is confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda
    11.1, Devrimci Emek editor Sedat Hayta and Jiyana Nû editor Ali Demir are placed under arrest by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
    12.1, the Istanbul SSC confiscates Denge Azadi N°34, Alinteri N°38 and the last issue of Medya Günesi for separatist propaganda.
    15.1, a former editor of the defunct daily Özgür Gündem, Mehmet Emin Baser is taken into custody in Istanbul.
    16.1, police raid the editorial office of the periodical Özgür Gelecek and arrest Chief correspondent Kenan Taskin and correspondents Ali Bozlu, Bektas Toptas and Murat Yildiz.
    16.1, police raiding a series of houses in Trabzon detain Özgür Karadeniz editor Kemal Evciman and Mücadele correspondent Esra Yildirim as well as 12 other people for having taken part in Dev-Sol activities.
    17.1, the Diyarbakir SSC Prosecutor opens a new legal action against seven officials of the IHD Diyarbakir Section. IHD Diyarbakir Chairman Halit Temli and six other officials face prison terms of up to ten years for separatist propaganda in a 1992 report on the unlawful practices in the emergency law region.
    18.1, four periodicals, Atilim N°15, Newroz N°45, Alinteri N°39 and Odak N°38, are confiscated by the decisions of the Istanbul SSC and a local penal court for separatist propaganda and praising outlawed organisations.
    18.1, in Ankara, four journalists, Abdullah Güler (Medya Günesi), Ali Toprak (Atilim), Gülseren Duman (Direnis) and Yeter Yalcintas (Kizil Bayrak) are placed under arrest by a tribunal on charges of separatist propaganda.
    19.1, the magazines Aktüel N°185 and Hedef N°39 are confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
    20.1, journalist-writer Erhan Altun is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to 20 months in prison and TL 208 million in fine for separatist propaganda in an article he wrote to the periodical Gercek of September 23, 1994. The tribunal also sentences Gercek editor Pelin Sener to six months in prison and TL 50 million in fine.
    22.1, the Istanbul SSC confiscates Jiyana Nû N°17 and Atilim N°16 for separatist propaganda.
    26.1, the Istanbul SSC confiscates for separatist propaganda a book entitled Marxism and Civil War and published by the periodical Devrimci Emek.
    27.1, Gencligin Sesi editor Seher Karatas is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to six months in prison and TL 100 million in fine for separatist propaganda. The tribunal also decides to ban the publication of the review for ten days.
    27.1, the Istanbul SSC sentences Devrimci Genclik editor Sabahat Varol to a fine of TL 50 million and decides to ban the review's publication for one month.
    27.1, the Workers' Party (IP) Chairman Dogu Perincek is tried at the Ankara SSC by virtue of ATL for separatist propaganda in an article he wrote to the review Özgür Bilim. He faces imprisonment of up to five years and a fine of TL 100 million. Three responsibles of the review, Medeni Ayhan, Sait Cakar and Cengiz Yasar too are being tried together with Perincek.
    28.1, on the demand of the Directory of Wireless Broadcasting, the Diyarbakir Governor stopped the broadcasting of five private TV and 16 private radio stations in the city.
    28.1, in Istanbul, the house of a columnist of the journal Beklenen Vakit, Yasar Kaplan, is destroyed by a bomb explosion. The attempt is claimed by the Islamist organization IBDA-C.
    29.1, the Chairman of the Petroleum Workers Trade Union (Petrol-Is), Münir Ceylan, is released after having served eight months of his imprisonment at the Saray Prison. He was sentenced for an article he wrote to the weekly Yeni Ülke.
    30.1, the distributor of the local newspaper Güney Uyanis, Serap Aladag claims to have been tortured by police after her detention on January 28.
    30.1, the Istanbul SSC confiscates the magazine Alinteri N°40 for inciting the people to commit crime.
    31.1, Newroz N°47 is confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda.
    2.2, a book entitled Freedom of Opinion and Turkey is confiscated by the Istanbul SSC. The prosecutor starts a legal proceeding against novelist Yasar Kemal and the Director of Can Publishing House for inciting the people, in the book, to hate and hostility on the basis of racial and regional differences.
    9.2, the Court of Cassation ratifies a sentence against Mustafa Pala for a book entitled Talks and Answers that he prepared to publication. For the book dedicated to the memory of Musa Anter, an assassinated Kurdish author, Pala was sentenced by the Ankara SSC to two years in prison and TL 250 million in fine. The director of the Yaba Publishing House, Aydin Dogan too was sentenced to six months in prison and TL 100 million in fine for the same book.
    9.2, a correspondent of the German newspaper Junge Welt, Corinna Guttstadt is expelled from Turkey for activities harmful to public order. She was detained on February 8 in Izmir as covering some events.
    12.2, in Istanbul, Müslüm Catak and Saliha Yaptaterek, respectively responsible editors of Newroz and Alinteri, are placed under arrest by the Istanbul SSC.
    14.2, in Istanbul, a penal court starts to try journalist Abdurrahman Dilipak on charges of contravening the Law on Protection of Atatürk in a speech criticising Kemalism. He faces a prison term of up to five years.
    14.2, the weekly magazine Newroz announces that 47 out of its 49 issues published in 1994 have been confiscated by the Istanbul SSC and its three responsible editors, Müslüm Yilmaz, Mehmet Kesli and Müslüm Catak, arrested. Although two editors were later released, Müslüm Catak is still in prison.
    15.2, the director of the Basak Publishing House, Hikmet Kocak is sentenced by a penal court in Ankara to three months in prison and TL 78 thousand in fine for having mailed to members of Parliament a book entitled To Newroz We Turned Dawns. Kocak was already sentenced to six months in prison and TL 100 million in fine for having published this book written by poet Edip Polat.
    15.2, the editor of the defunct magazine Emegin Bayragi, Haydar Demir is sentenced by the military court of the Turkish General Staff to two months in prison and TL 160 million in fine for anti-militarist publications.
    16.2, the director of Yurt Publishing House, Ünsal Öztürk is sentenced by the Ankara SSC to six months in prison and TL 50 million in fine for having published a book entitled A Grandiose Oak - Kurdish Sage Musa Anter. Öztürk is currently serving other prison terms to which he was sentenced for some other publications.
    19.2, the last issues of the magazines Azadi and Kurtulus are confiscated by the decision of a penal court in Istanbul.
    20.2, Özgür Gelecek N°44 and Devrim N°33 are confiscated by the Istanbul SSC for separatist propaganda and praising outlawed organizations.
    21.2, the Ankara prosecutor indicts folk singers Sah Turna Dumlupinar and Ali Ekber Eren as well as the chairman of the Seaport Workers' Trade Union (Liman-Is), Hasan Biber, and an official of the Pir Sultan Abdal Association, Emel Sungur, for their speeches at a protest meeting on July 2, 1994 in Ankara. Accused of inciting the people to commit crimes, each faces a prison term of up to five years.
    21.2, two journalists of the daily Cumhuriyet, publisher Berin Nadi and editor Ibrahim Yildiz are tried by the Istanbul SSC for propaganda in favour of the Islamist organization IBDA-C.
    22.2, the Higher Radio-TV Board decides to stop for one day the broadcasting of the Best FM and the Milas FM radio stations.
    23.2, an Anadolu Agency correspondent, Bünyamin Toprak is harassed and detained by police as covering a student demonstration.
    24.2, a former editor of the magazine Medya Günesi, Nurettin Yüksekkaya is sentenced by the Istanbul SSC to six months in prison and TL 50 million in fine for some articles he published. The court also decides to close down the magazine for month.
    27.2, a correspondent of the Greek newspaper Adosmeftos Typos, Ionnis Kokkidis, and his translator Mikaili Gunis are taken into police custody in Diyarbakir where they had interviews with IHD and HADEP officials.


    Onat Kutlar, a leading film critic and writer, died on January 15 at hospital where he had been taken after being severely injured in the bomb explosion in the Marmara Hotel in Istanbul on December 30, 1994.
    The responsibility of the bomb attempt was claimed by a fundamentalist organization, the Great Eastern Islamic Raiders-Front (IBDA-C), which had launched a campaign against the New Year celebration "in a Moslem country."
    Thousands of people attending Kutlar's funeral condemned Islamic fundamentalists and protested against the Government's practices against the secular principles of the Republic.
    Islamic groups which are against secularism and want to establish Shariah in Turkey were responsible for 464 incidents in 1994.
    After the shocking rise of the pro-Islamic Welfare Party (RP) at the local elections and its taking under control many big cities such as Istanbul and Ankara, Islamic extremists increased their terrorist acts. A declaration of RP leader Necmeddin Erbakan in Parliament, "The question now is whether we will come to power with peace or with bloodshed," encouraged Islamic activists. The defence of the murderers of the Sivas Pogrom by the RP leaders at the tribunal too has been another factor encouraging these extremist groups.
    Hizbullah continued its attacks against the Kurdish activists in the Southeast in 1994. Hizbullah, which began operating only a few years ago, is supported by the state security forces. The organization has killed around 200 people, mainly in the Eastern cities of Diyarbakir, Mardin and Batman.
    However, it has split into two groups — "Ilim Grubu" (the Science Group) and "Menzil Grubu" (Range [of a weapon] Group).
Clashes have also taken place between these two groups.
    Another radical Islamic terrorist organization, the Great Eastern Islamic Raiders-Front (IBDA-C), claimed responsibility  for 90 incidents of terrorism, including five bombings in various cities.
    The last victim of the IBDA-C in 1994 was the prominent Turkish intellectual Onat Kutlar.


    February 22, an extreme-right group raiding the Marmara University campus with draggers, axes and clubs wounded eight students by accusing them of not observing religious fast in the month of Ramadan.
    February 23, at the Marmara University campus, Grey Wolves attack a group of students carrying out a demonstration against the fundamentalist attack and wound some of them.
    February 24, police forces raiding the Marmara University campus in Istanbul  beat and arrest more than 150 left-wing students. Same day, Grey Wolves attack the Political Sciences Faculty of the Istanbul University and wound the students not observing religious fast.
    February 27, in Ankara, the headquarters of the Atatürkist Thought Association (ADD) is destroyed by a bomb explosion. An alleged member of the Islamist organization IBDA-C, Cahit Ayaz is killed at the explosion of the bomb that he placed there.     February 27, in Sivas, a fundamentalist group raiding a cafeteria in the city centre on pretext that religious fast is not observed there and wounded seven clients.


    The publisher of the book entitled Armenian Taboo, Mrs. Ayse Nur Zarakolu was sentenced on January 30 by the State Security Court of Istanbul to two years in prison and a fine of TL 250 millions ($6,250) on charges of instigating the people to hatred and hostility on the basis of racial, religious and regional differences.
    The court also decided to confiscated all exemplaries of the book, to open legal proceeding against Mr. Abdülkadir Konuk, translator of the book, and journalist Ragip Zarakolu, who wrote a preface to the book.
    Armenian Taboo is the translation of Yves Ternon's book Les Arméniens, histoire d'un génocide, published in Paris by Seuil Publishing House in 1977.
    Mrs. Zarakolu qualified the verdict "scandalous" and said she will appeal to the Court of Cassation.
    Same day, at another trial, Mrs. Zarakolu, owner of the Belge Publishing House, was sentenced to a 6-month imprisonment and a fine of TL 50 millions for having published a book collecting the articles of Yasar Kaya, honorary president of the DEP and publisher of the defunct daily newspaper Özgür Gündem.
    The court also decided to ban the activities of the publishing house for one month for having published this book.

    The Turkish Government has banned the participation of an Armenian delegation from Turkey to the election of new Armenian religious leader in Armenia at the beginning of April 1995.
    After the death of the Catholicos of Armenian Church Vasken I, the Armenian communities of all the countries are called on to send a delegation to Armenia for electing new Catholicos.
    The Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul Kazandjiyan asked the Governor of Istanbul on January 20 to authorize the election of a nine-man delegation by the Armenian community of Turkey.
    However, the Patriarch was summoned to the Governor's office on January 27 and informed that, according to the directive of the Interior Ministry such an election could not be held because it would be against the Lausanne Treaty and Turkish laws.


    As the talks are going on to normalize Turco-Armenian relations, the Turkish Government decided to reinforce Turkish control on the Armenian minority schools in Turkey.
    For this purpose, a special section was constituted within the Turkish Education Ministry.
    As a first measure taken by this section, the Education Directorate gathered Armenian directors and Turkish vice-directors of the Armenian schools in Istanbul on January 27.
    During the meeting, Education Director announced that the Turkish vice-directors of Armenian schools are, as representatives of the Turkish national view, charged with surveying whatsoever be in these schools and immediately informing the Education Directorate of them.
    Although, according to Article 40 of the Lausanne Treaty, the minority schools have been recognized autonomy, the Turkish Government appoints to each minority school a vice-director of Turkish origin. These vice-directors have unlimited authority over the Armenian director and teachers.


    The daily Milliyet of February 3, 1995, reported that Armenian President Ter-Petrossian had a meeting with the neo-fascist Turkish leader Alparslan Türkes for the normalisation of the relations between Turkey and Armenia.
    Two days later, MHP chairman Türkes confirmed that he met with Ter-Petrossian in 1993 following a request by the Armenian lobby in France.
    Indicating that he had informed the prime minister and foreign minister of Turkey at the time that a meeting was planned between himself and Ter-Petrossian, Türkes said that the Turkish ambassador and counsellor were also at the meeting which was aimed at trying to see if the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan could be stopped. He added that another aim of the meeting was to explore the possibilities for developing friendly ties between Armenia and Turkey.
    The daily Cumhuriyet of February 5 reported that a second meeting between Türkes and Ter-Petrossian was held in 1994 in Germany.
    Since Türkes is known as one of the most ardent enemies of Armenians who is still using the word "Armenian" as an insult against left-wing or Kurdish activists, this meeting caused a big confusion as well in Armenia as in Armenian Diaspora.
    Besides, Türkes had played an important role in the rising ultra-nationalist and anti-Armenian currents in Azerbaijan after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Türkes' many notorious "Grey Wolves" had been placed by the former President Elcibey to key posts in Azerbaijan administrative and military establishment.
    According to the press reports, as the Armenian Diaspora is preparing spectacular commemorations on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the genocide of which were victims more than 1.5 millions Armenians during the First World War, Ter-Petrossian seems ready to set aside the genocide for normalising relations with Turkey. Although similar commemoration demonstrations are being prepared in Yerevan, Ter-Petrossian's private adviser Jirair Libaridian reportedly said that he hoped the "historical reality" of genocide would not prevent the improvement of bilateral ties.
    In the meantime, the Armenian newspaper Gamk of February 27 reported that Armenian Education Minister Achot Bleyan ordered announced the interdiction of the education on Armenian genocide in the nursery, primary and secondary schools of Armenia.
    This gesture and the closure of the nationalist Dashnak Party in Armenia is considered by Ankara as another sign of Ter-Petrossian's will to normalise relations with Turkey.
    Recently, Libaridian had a series of talks with Turkish officials in Ankara on February 24-25. The Turkish side told Libaridian that to defuse tension in Yerevan's ties with Ankara, Armenians should pull out from the occupied Azeri lands — excluding the disputed enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh — and drop their rejection of Turkish participation in a planned peace-keeping force for Karabakh.
    During the talks, two sides also discussed "potential economic cooperation, including border trade and the passage of Azeri oil pipeline to Turkey through Armenian territory" in the event of normalized bilateral ties.