Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I have been reduced to silence in Turkey and now, I am a journalist in exile

Necati ABAY
Representative of the Platform for Solidarity with Arrested Journalists (TGDP) in Exile

November 25, 201

I have been reduced to silence in Turkey and now, I am a journalist in exile.

I will try to maintain my journalism activity, press freedom, freedom of thought and expression struggle at exile conditions as a representative of the Platform for Solidarity with Arrested Journalists (TGDP) spokesmanship of which I have been carrying out since its foundation in February 2004.

You may be one of thousands of witnesses of the struggle that I carry on in the fields of press freedom, freedom of thought and expression, freedom of speaking, protest and organization in Turkey.

I have been in prison for three times as “a hardened criminal of thought” . I stayed at Metris military prison in the period of fascist coup dated September 12, 1980.  I stayed at Gebze Prison in the period of postmodern coup of 1997 and at Tekirdağ F Type Prison in 2003 due to the conspiracy suit that still continues.
I have been forced to make asylum application to Germany by the AKP government at this stage.

I was in Europe due to panels with subject of “press freedom in Turkey”.  I had completed my panels in Germany, Sweden and France. I cancelled my panels in Belgium and the Netherlands and gave up with returning to Turkey when the Supreme Court of Appeal declared its decision on October 15, 2012. I had to make asylum application to Germany.
The state showed the way of either F type prison or the exile. I have been reduced to silence in Turkey.
İstanbul 12th High Criminal Court sentenced me to imprisonment for 18 years and 9 months with the claim of being the organization director with its decree dated May 4, 2011. My attorney Gülizar Tuncer and me thought that the Supreme Court of Appeal would reverse the judgment of sentence with request of exculpation because I was sentenced due to “opinion but no evidence” as stated in the court decree. In fact, a non-existing proof could not be found. The decree of the court was not a legal decree but a political decision. In spite of that,  9th Penal Chamber of the Supreme Court of Appeal  reversed the judgment in favor of me seemingly since it considered the penalty for 18 years and 9 months much with the decree declared on the date of October 15, 2012 (justified decision has not been declared yet) but it clinched the lawlessness and gave a decree against me by stating that I had to be punished between 10-15 years for organization membership.

The summary of the state’s debate is as follows for me: Shall we punish Necati Abay with 18 years and 9 months or shall we give a punishment between 10-15 years!

My search for the justice for 9 years has been ended with exile in that way.

There are some reasons for which they want to punish me with penal servitude.
I conspiracy was organized before 9 years since I was working as editor and author at Atılım, the newspaper. Atılım is punished once more at me in that way. I was arrested before 9 years when I was working at Atılım and I was released by the court pending my trial. After that, we established the Platform for Solidarity with Arrested Journalists (TGDP) in February 2004 with a group of opponent journalists. I have conducted spokesmanship of TGDP starting from its foundation. TGDP, spokesmanship of which I have been carrying on, has a special role in declaring the fact of arrested journalists, the fact that Turkey is the number one in the world in terms of the number of arrested journalists, the severe problems in fields of press freedom, freedom of thought and expression to the public opinion of the world and Turkey and creation of public opinion. I consider critics bombing of the Prime Minister Erdoğan about TGDP, spokesmanship of which I have been carrying on by giving its name on TV on the date of March 7, 2012 as a reason of the fact that they want to punish me and imposition of exile to me.

Moreover, I was one the persons who made the torturer police chief Sedat Selim Ay who was brought to the post of İstanbul Vice Chief of Police and İstanbul Anti-Terror Branch of in torture lawsuit. In addition, we had applied to European Human Rights Court (EHRC) about the state of Republic of Turkey because of dropping lawsuits of torturers due to prescription and executing torture investigation deficiently as intentional. EHRC sentenced Turkey on the date of April 6, 2010. I was one of the persons who had Turkey sentenced in this lawsuit. One of the reasons that they want to punish me insistently and imposition of exile is these torture suits and That I had torturers sentenced.

Last of all, I should state that I was member of Organization of Journalists without Borders (RSF) on the date of October 19, 2012 when I went to Paris for panels.

I greet all of you with respect and love...

NOTE: You can record my phone number in Germany (0049) 152 13 78 74 41

CONTACT: Necati ABAY, Germany Phone GSM: (0049) 152 13 78 74 41

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Asylum seekers on hunger strike in Finland

No to deportations to Afghanistan!


Two Afghan asylum seekers have been on hunger strike in Helsinki since the 10th of  September 2012. For the first two weeks they were three hunger strikers. They have been refused asylum. By going on hunger strike they are opposing deportation to Afghanistan. They have good reason to believe that their lives are in danger there. They ask Finland to offer them protection. The men have demonstrated and camped in front of the Finnish Parliament for almost two months now. Their health condition is worsening all the time. They have both suffered of acute pains and occasional attacks of illness. In addition the autumn in Finland is cold and the first snow has already fallen.

The hunger striking men are prosecuted in Afghanistan because of political activity. One of them has been tortured. Their close relatives have been murdered recently. The background of their individual prosecution in Afghanistan is the war that has been going on in the country for years and the dysfunction of the current government. Ordinary people have no way of getting protection neither against prosecution carried out by the Taliban nor against that carried out by state officials.

The Finnish authorities have not responded to the protesters’ demands for international protection nor have they showed any other signs of willingness to help. The hunger striking men have appealed to the Administrative Court of Helsinki about the negative response to their asylum claims but fear that the appeal will be rejected.

The hunger strikers’ protest has gained attention and many responses. A group of Lutheran priests as well as the Occupy Finland –movement have demonstrated on their behalf. A few MP’s have pled for them. Many Afghan and Iranian asylum seekers and residents have offered their support or willingness to join the protest camp. Priests, doctors and activists have contacted the Minister of Interior Päivi Räsänen urging her to act on the asylum seekers’ behalf before it is too late. Grassroots activists from the Vapaa Liikkuvuus (Freedom of Movement) –network and other individuals have supported the men in practical issues and in spreading word about their struggle. We have made sure that a supporter stays overnight at the protest camp every night in case of emergency. During the days we spend a lot of time at the tents discussing together and monitoring the men’s health condition. In addition we get needed supplies and try to arrange proper health care for the strikers.

Our common goal is to broaden the struggle and to affect the rights of all asylum seekers.
The Freedom of Movement –network demands that international support be granted to the men. The Finnish migration authorities have made a wrong decision and they must right it immediately.
The hunger strikers have had to live in inhumane circumstances in Europe for many years. They have entered the EU via Greece which doesn’t have even the most basic asylum system.
Finland does not send asylum seekers back to Greece. It does, however, deport tens of asylum seekers to Afghanistan each year to areas that have been labeled safe.

These are the hunger strikers’ demands:
Stop deportations to Afghanistan – The country is not safe and refugees coming from there must be granted protection in Europe.
An end to years of waiting – Asylum requests have to be processed quickly and justly.
No to the Dublin treaty – Deportations inside the EU must be stopped and asylum seekers must be granted the right to choose in which country they request asylum.

We are thankful for any information on your country’s policies regarding Afghan asylum seekers as well as on the asylum seekers’ struggles for their rights.
We are also willing to work on international action to end deportations to Afghanistan and other means of co-operation.
In solidarity,
the Freedom of Movement –network,
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