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The court will announce its final decision about Pinar Selek’s case at the 11th of June

2 May

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Support for Pinar Selek

28 Apr

Support for Pinar Selek

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Support for Pinar Selek

28 Apr

Support for Pinar Selek

Pinar Selek’s Story

28 Apr

As We’re Still Witnesses Platform, we have been struggling with the State conspiracy against author and sociologist Pınar Selek and seeking seeking justice in this case for 15 years.
In a civil war era of the 1990s, Pınar Selek sought to understand the aporia of the peace process with respect to the Kurdish issue in her academic studies. An explosion occurred in the Spice Bazaar of Istanbul on July 09, 1998. Pınar Selek was taken into custody two days after the explosion. While she refused to name the individuals she had interviewed during the course of her research, her academic study was confiscated. She was exposed to serious torture, including Strappoda, which dislocated her left arm. Without being asked a single question on the Spice Bazaar case, she was arrested for allegedly being a member of an illegal organization. Istanbul Police Department labeled her as the “Spice Bazaar Bomber,” relying on Abdülmecit Öztürk’s testimony record that was taken under torture, where he said they planted the bomb together.
The Security bomb experts continually explained that it was the gas leak that caused the explosion. Even though this was also supported by the forensic evidence and analysis, Pınar Selek was incriminated in connection to the explosion. She was acquitted of all charges and released after Abdülmecit Öztürk confessed that his testimony was extracted under torture. Nevertheless, with an illegal intervention to the trial, the General Directorate of Security of Turkey inserted an unsigned and undated report to the case file with an annotation telling that that they were disturbed by Selek’s release. The report said, “The explosion is caused by a bomb. Constitute a new commission of experts!” The new scientific expert’s report again confirmed that the explosion was caused by the gas leak and Pınar Selek was acquitted on June 8th, 2006. The Supreme Court reversed the court’s judgment on the basis that there were no verdicts. The court acquitted her for the second time on May 23, 2008. Abdülmecit Öztürk acquitted of all charges along with Pınar. His acquittal decision was not appealed by the prosecutor and was confirmed. In that same case, the prosecutor appealed the acquittal of Pınar based on Abdülmecit Öztürk’s testimony, in which he rejected his previous statement of confession that the two carried out the bomb together. On February 9, 2011, Istanbul 12th High Criminal Court insisted on the acquittal and for the third time ruled for her acquittal. The prosecutor appealed to the Supreme Court again. The Court’s final ruling of acquittal was revoked by an interim decision at a time when the Chief Judge of the Court was on medical leave. In the trial on January 24, 2013, Pınar Selek was sentenced to aggravated life imprisonment. The Chief Judge of the Court, who has been following the case since the beginning dissented to the opinion. Afterwards, the Turkish state requested the extradition of Selek by French authorities. However, Interpol rejected the request as it did not fulfill the criteria of a red notice and decided that the request should be revoked.
While being subjected to all this unlawfulness and psychological torture, Pınar wrote a novel and many books, attended various activities around the world, and completed her PhD in Political Science at the University of Strasbourg. The Supreme Court appeal trial for Pınar Selek will be held on April 30, 2014. We seek solidarity with organizations around the world and reinforce our struggle prior to this appeal trial, which is the utmost point for the domestic law. Your signature on this call, solidarity activities you organize for Pınar Selek and your press statements make us stronger.
Ultimate acquittal, justice, freedom of expression and academic integrity is the rights for all. We demand Pınar Selek to be acquitted once and for all. We would like Pınar to be with us in her own country, living and producing with freedom!
We’re Still Witnesses Platform

 

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Support for Pinar Selek

28 Apr

Support for Pinar Selek

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Support for Pinar Selek

28 Apr

Support for Pinar Selek

#PinarSelekisnotalone

16 Apr

While being subjected to all unlawfulness and psychological torture throughout 16-year trial, Pınar Selek has written a novel and many books, attended various activities around the world, and completed her PhD in Political Scienceat the University of Strasbourg. There will be a Supreme Court appeal trial on April 30, 2014 at 9:00 am at Supreme Court Criminal Chamber 9, which is the utmost point for the domestic law. We seek solidarity and reinforce our struggle and resistance prior to this appeal trial. Please write whatever you wish to say on a piece of paper, hold it up and shoot a photo and then share your photos on social media with the hashtag #pinarselekyalnizdegil.

Although not limited, here are a few suggestions from us:

We’re in solidarity with Pınar Selek

Pınar Selek is not alone

Justice for Pınar Selek

Acquit Pınar Selek Once and for All!

We demand Pınar Selek’s Acquittal Back

Please click  Pınar Selek Yalnız Değil to see the campaign photos.

12th of April: Worldwide Solidarity Day with Pinar Selek

9 Apr

If your organization wants to sign our call or wants to organize an action/demonstration this saturday (April 12) please contact Ms Yesim Basaran (yesim.tuba@gmail.com), Ms Karin Karakasli (karinkarakasli@yahoo.com) and Mr Onur Fidangul (ofidangul@iglhrc.org) on the issue.

For more info on the Pinar Selek case, you can check out this link where you can find news in English, German, French, Italian and more.

Hala Tanığız Platformu

Supporters:

Adana Kadın Dayanışma Merkezi ve Sığınmaevi Derneği (AKDAM)
Ankara Feminist Kolektif
Antalya Pembe Caretta LGBTQ
Avrupa Kadın Lobisi Türkiye Koordinasyonu
Barış İçin Kadın Girişimi
Bodrum Kadın Dayanışma Derneği
Boğaziçi Gösteri Sanatları Topluluğu (BGST)
Eğitim-Sen İstanbul 2 No’lu Şube Kadın Komisyonu
Ev-Ek-Sen
Flu Baykuş
Hala Tanığız Platformu
HDK Kadın Meclisi
HDK Kadın Meclisi
Helsinki Yurttaşlar Dernegi
İzmir ÇEKEV
KA.DER Ankara
KA.DER Genel Merkez
Kadın Dayanışma Vakfı
Kadınlarla Dayanışma Vakfı
Kaos GL
Karadeniz Kadın Dayanışma Derneği
Keskesor LGBT
Lambdaistanbul LGBTİ Dayanışma Derneği
Lambdaistanbul LGBTİ Dayanışma Derneği
Madimar
Mimar Sinan Güzel Sanatlar Fakültesi Kadın Araştırmaları Kulübü (MSGSÜ KAK)
Muğla Kadın Dayanışma Grubu
Pembe Hayat LGBTT Dayanışma Derneği
Sosyal Politikalar Cinsiyet Kimliği ve Cinsel Yönelim Çalışmaları Derneği (SPoD)
Sosyalist Feminist Kolektif (SFK)
Türkiye Homenet Ev-Eksenli Çalışan Kadınlar Dayanışma Ağı
Van Kadın Derneği
Yeşiller Sol Kadın
Yeşiller ve Sol Gelecek Partisi
Amities Kurdes Lyon et Rhônes-Alpes (Lyon ve Rhone-Alpes Bölgesi Kürt Dostluk Derneği)
Internatinal Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC)

Call for Pınar Selek trial at the Supreme Court

25 Mar

Dear Madam/Sir;  

As you know, Pınar Selek sentenced to aggravated life imprisonment in January 2013, despite being acquitted of the same charge three times in the past. Experts called to speak on the case frequently posited that the explosion was not caused by a bomb, but by a gas leak.   Pınar Selek’s lawyers appealed against the sentence but the Chief Prosecutor of the Supreme Court of Appeal made a judicial request for the approval of Istanbul 12th High Criminal Court’s recent verdict sentencing Pınar Selek to aggravated life imprisonment despite lawyers arguing that the Kafkaesque judicial procedure breached all known international and Turkish standards concerning double jeopardy and criminal trials.   Last year’s final verdict, which was handed down in spite of chief judge Vedat Yılmazabdurrahmanoğlu’s opposition, stirred great outrage both inside and outside Turkey. Yılmazabdurrahmanoğlu rejected the verdict on the grounds that there was a lack of proof that the explosion was even caused by a bomb, but he was outvoted by his colleagues on the court board.   Following the ruling, the Turkish Justice Ministry issued a red notice for Selek’s capture and applied to French authorities for her extradition. The red notice request of Ministry of Justice rejected by Interpol recently.   Now, Pınar Selek, who was not asked a single question about the explosion, became the only suspect convicted in this case! This example signifies how Pınar Select has been blatantly targeted. Although the forensic evidence and analysis concluded that there was no criminal conduct, the system strived to create a criminal. Pınar Selek was criminalized even before the construction of this crime.   All these acts of injustice have aimed to turn a peace activist into a mass murderer in the eyes of the public. Rather than put an end to the injustice that has wounded the public’s conscience, the Chief Prosecutor of the Supreme Court of Appeals inexplicably revoked the recent ruling of acquittal and made a judicial request to approve Pınar Selek’s sentencing to aggravated life imprisonment.   We are now in the most critical situation. If the Supreme Court approves the local court’s ruling against Pınar Selek, there will be only one more way to appeal against the approval of the ruling and we will have a very small chance to change the decision. There will be only one hearing at the Supreme Court and then the Supreme Court will announce its ruling on the case. So we kindly urge you to come to Ankara or to send observers to the Pinar Selek’s hearing which will be held on 30th of April, 2014 at 09:00 a.m. at Supreme Court Criminal Chamber No: 9. We do need your support and it can be our last chance to support Pinar Selek. Any of your contribution will be vital.   We are trying to organize the stay of the observers in Ankara. We have enough houses to host the observers. Ms Ulku Ozakin is responsible of organizing the stay in Ankara. You can contact Ulku Ozakin (uozakin@gmail.com)about your stay. If you like to stay at hotel, we have already found cheap hostels to stay (10 Euro for one person for one night). We are trying to find free hotel also if our houses are not enough. Members of LGBT and feminist organizations and leftist parties are volunteers for your stay in Ankara like in Istanbul.   Please do write Ms Ulku Ozakin for the organization of Ankara. And please cc every message to me and Ms Yesim Basaran (Yesim.tuba@gmail.com). I personally will be in Ankara one day before the trial. We hope we can arrange a meeting before the trial. We will write you about the details as soon as we can arrange everything.   We would like to preserve our trust in justice as we did throughout the 16-year trial and persecution of Pınar Selek. Thus, we urgently reiterate our request to fix this huge and terrible mistake. We demand Pınar Selek to be acquitted once and for all.   We do hope that you can come to the trial to support justice. We are looking forward to your respond.  

Yasemin Öz-Attorney at Law International Spokesperson of Pınar Selek Solidarity Committee-Turkey

Pinar Selek’s lawyers will appeal to the Supreme Court

29 Jan

You have sentenced as the one and only our Pınar alone to life imprisonment

The life sentence you have given is null and void

We stand by Pınar’s acquittal

Our struggle continues

There has been a new scandalous court judgment in the Spice Bazaar case which has turned into a never-ending story in fifteen years: Pınar Selek alone has been given a life sentence. Let us recall that Istanbul 12th High Criminal Court had given Pınar Selek an acquittal for a third time on February 9, 2011.  The Court had revoked its own final ruling of acquittal on November 22, 2012 violating both procedural and criminal law.

After the court acted again against due process and rejected the demand of recusal from Pınar Selek’s lawyers, today, in the hearing on January 24, 2013 the acquittal of Abdülmecit Öztürk, the other defendant in the Spice Bazaar explosion was confirmed on the grounds that his acquittal was not appealed to the Supreme Court. Then  the court went on to hand down a life sentence for Pınar Selek alone concerning the Spice Bazaar case. In this way, the other defendant’s testimony that was obtained under torture and subsequently denied in open court was not accepted as valid evidence by the court for him. However, the very same testimony that was deemed invalid in the case of Öztürk was taken as a valid basis for the judgment against Pınar Selek. Chief Judge of the Court offered a dissenting opinion and voted in favor of Pınar Selek’s acquittal on the grounds that the Court had the right to insist on its acquittal ruling and that there was no adequate evidence for a conviction. However, based on the votes of the other two judges in the Board, the court issued the verdict with a two to one majority. But this is not the final judgment; domestic ways of seeking legal recourse have not yet been exhausted and this unlawful verdict will be appealed to the Supreme Court.

For those of us who observed this gross miscarriage of justice with outcry at the courthouse, as well as for the public opinion in Turkey and across the world, this ruling is totally worthless. Moreover this most recent verdict is also legally null and void. The same local court has not hesitated in issuing two contradictory rulings—insisting upon the acquittal and compliance with the decision to revoke the acquittal. For this reason, we stand by the last ruling of acquittal on February 9, 2011.

Our struggle for law and justice will resolutely continue during the appeal process at the Supreme Court with growing national and international support. We underline that Pınar Selek’s innocence lasts as always. Seeing that Pınar Selek is tried to be converted into the victim of a big political operation, we also declare that we will never let go of our friend Pınar’s hand. After all, a country where oppression is imposed on us in the name of justice is a prison for us all!

We are still Witnesses” Platform