Academic Ersanlı and Writer Zarakolu - 100 Days in Jail
"We want Justice and Freedom on the 100th day of arrest" demanded the Eğitim-Sen Istanbul Universities Branch on 8 February. The protestors marked the 100th day in detention for academic Ersanlı and writer Zarakolu with a demonstration in front of the Beşiktaş Courthouse.
İstanbul - BIA News Center
09 February 2012, Thursday 09:46
The Education and Science Workers Union (Eğitim-Sen) Istanbul Universities Branch issued a press release in front of the Beşiktaş (Istanbul) Courthouse at 12.30 pm on Wednesday (8 February) to mark the 100th day in detention for academic Büşra Ersanlı and writer Ragıp Zarakolu. Both Ersanlı and Zarakolu were arrested on 31 October 2011 in the scope of an operation against the Union of Kurdish Communities (KCK).
The press release was read by İhsan Akça, Head of the Eğitim-Sen Istanbul Universities Branch. He claimed that there was no difference between Special Authority Courts and State Security Courts (DGM). "Long detention periods are seen as a method of prosecution and punishment; the agenda of judicial organs is directly infiltrated by the political power. These applications disregard the principle of a state of law", he announced.
Akça reminded the words of journalist Ahmet Şık who said "Those who touch get burned" when he was taken into custody. He said that the arrest of Büşra Ersanlı and Ragıp Zarakolu conveyed the message of "Those who even get close get burned" to supporters of the democratic demands of the Kurdish people.
Slogans like "Büşra Ersanlı is our honour" and "Oppressions will not intimidate us" were chanted during the press release.
Galatasaray University member of staff Özgür Mumcu said in an interview with bianet that nothing has changed since Büşra Ersanlı was imprisoned. Mumcu argued that up to now no reasons were announced why Ersanlı was jailed and still kept in detention. He emphasized that the judiciary should explain the reasons for her arrest immediately.
Bosporus University member of staff Koray Çalışkan told bianet that efforts for democratization in Turkey were significantly harmed. "A hundred days have passed since Büşra Ersanlı has been arrested. In the Middle-East, the complete political system changes within 18 days. This is the kind of democratization process going on right now. At such a time it is unacceptable to keep such an important scientist in prison for a hundred days without disclosing any allegations or starting any hearing", Çalışkan criticized. (SK/HK)