Another man dies in Istanbul – wounded and ignored by the police

Berkin Elvan died in March

Yesterday High School Dev-Genc (a left group amongst high schools) staged a protest in Okmeydani. I don’t know why yesterday.

Police shot and killed Ugur Kurt who had nothing to do with the protests but was at Okmeydani Djemevi for a funeral (see previous post).

Yesterday evening, people were out on the streets protesting Ugur Kurt’s killing, when another man (who remains unidentified) was shot in the head by a tear gas canister and this morning he was pronounced dead.

Sadly, this is a vicious cycle familiar to Turkey and elsewhere: someone dies, people protest, one of the protesters gets killed, people protest, one of the protesters gets killed…

What’s unbelievably sad is that this man was shot and lied on the road, according to reports by 45 minutes, when the police did not allow anyone to come to his help.

These pictures show, he lied there long enough for his blood to flow down to the police officers, as if pointing towards his killers. This is unacceptable and the responsibility of PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan who said “Berkin Elvan died and that’s that [get over it]” “I am in awe of how patient the police are” and its his government and judicial system which made sure that the police photographed and filmed as killing Ethem Sarisuluk last summer in Ankara walked free.

And now, the society is being pushed to a bigger drive between Alevi and Sunni. I just hope people will be smarter and more patient than RTE and his police and not fall for these provocations.

ignore edilen adam 2 ignore edilen adam 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more in Turkish: http://www.imctv.com.tr/2014/05/23/okmeydaninda-ikinci-olum/

A by stander is killed – 2nd victim to police bullet

Yesterday, it was local and European elections in the UK where this blogger is based.

I voted on the way to work …what a lovely experience, and a privilege…even if it doesn’t means as much in the greater scheme of things, I don’t care. And the poll clerks were very friendly, the pride in their job was pulpable and they certainly didn’t look like they were worried about how fairly the votes would be counted and they were not planning on sleeping on the ballot paper bags over night to make sure that the ruling party does not swap them with false papers. [see March 30 election stories from Turkey] I felt genuinely happy leaving the polling station. More so than I’ve felt for a while now. 

then I came online and saw that police has shot a young man in the head in Okmeydani, Istanbul. By the evening, he was dead. Not just dead. Killed. By the police. With a gun. He was not a protester. He was at a Djemevi (Alevi place of worshiip) attending a funeral.

And now more and more people are asking the question – why are the majority of people who died since Gezi Alevis? and remind us all the other times Alevis were killed by the state, or their losses were not acknowledged by the state. Others point out that there isn’t a deliberate targeting of Alevis. I hope the latter are correct as I am seriously concerned about the future of the country and cannot get rid of visions of civil war. 

More on Ugur Kurt, who was killed yesterday. We wish his family all the patience in the world and are very sory for their, our, loss.

the text below is from http://revolution-news.com/turkish-police-critically-injure-ugur-kurt-when-shooting-wildly-at-student-protest/

you can watch him being shot or the moments leading to it, on this link, too. I can’t bring myself to watch it.

Image

Uğur Kurt (30), a contract worker in Beyoğlu Municipality, was shot dead with live ammo fired by police attacking the Okmeydanı weekly student protest for murdered Gezi protester Berkin Elvan.

Istanbul police have staged a crackdown on members of Dev-Genç youth organization of high school students who staged a march in the district of Okmeydanı today for Berkin Elvan who was murdered by police at the age of 15 during last year’s Gezi Park protests in Istanbul.

Uğur Kurt, was attending a funeral in nearby Djemevi (Alevi place of worship), when he was shot in the head by a real bullet fired by police attacking the student protest. Kurt who has been rushed to Okmeydanı Training and Research Hospital is reported to have been passed away.

 

For more photos, see: http://www.narphotos.net/SpotNews/Thumbnail/death-of-ugur-kurt/153/

 

CHP’s Ankara candidate vows to defend votes as police crack down on protest

1st April 2014 – ore than two days have passed since the end of the March 30 elections, but tension over counting and the victors remains latent, with anger over alleged electoral fraud in Ankara spreading to points around the country. The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) appealed to district election boards of Ankaraover irregularities in the local mayoral elections in which the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) incumbent won a narrow victory.

“We will not let any votes of the people of Ankara be wasted. We’ll follow the votes given for us until the end,” Mansur Yavaş, the CHP candidate for Ankara mayor, said in a press conference Apr. 1 noting that his party did not believe the election was fair. Apart from Ankara, the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) appealed the votes in three provinces, Iğdır, Kastamonu and Kütahya, while the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) appealed for a recount of votes in Istanbul’s Kartal district. The main opposition party also demanded a recount in Istanbul’s Üsküdar district.

In Ankara, some votes given to the CHP were included in the records of the ballot boxes of other parties, while some CHP votes were not recorded at ballot boxes, Mansur said, adding that around 12,000 ballot boxes were being examined one by one with the help of at least 500 600 young volunteers.

Continues: http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/police-use-water-cannons-as-protesters-denounce-vote-rigging-allegations-in-ankara-.aspx?pageID=238&nID=64391&NewsCatID=338

Court in Turkey moves to suspend ban on Twitter

26th March 2014 –  A court in Turkey has ordered the suspension of a controversial ban on the social media site Twitter but it could be weeks before it takes effect. Turkish users of Twitter expected to regain access shortly after the ruling but it remained blocked. The country’s telecommunication authority (TIB) has 30 days to decide whether to lift the ban. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to “wipe out Twitter” after users spread allegations of corruption. Twitter itself has filed a challenge to the access ban.
It said it had acted on two out of three Turkish legal orders but had concern about the third order as it was a request us to suspend an account accusing a former minister of corruption.
“This order causes us concern,” its general counsel, Vijaya Gadde, said in a statement. “Political speech is among the most important speech, especially when it concerns possible government corruption.” At a rally ahead of important local elections on Sunday, Mr Erdogan was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying: “I don’t understand how people of good sense could defend this Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. There are all kinds of lies there.”

People have demonstrated against the Twitter ban in the streets

People have demonstrated against the Twitter ban in the streets

A ban was imposed on Friday on the grounds that Twitter had failed to remove the allegations of corruption involving senior officials. A number of complaints were filed to courts, arguing the ban was illegal and unconstitutional. The administrative court in Ankara issued a temporary injunction on Wednesday ordering the TIB to restore access to Twitter until it could deliver its full verdict on the ban. Turkish media reports suggested the ban would be suspended soon afterwards but a source in Mr Erdogan’s office told Reuters news agency the TIB had 30 days to implement or appeal against the court ruling. Thirty days is a standard period in such cases. “The millions of people in Turkey who turn to Twitter to make their voices heard are being kept from doing just that,” Ms Gadde said. “There are no legal grounds for the blocking of our service in Turkey,” she added.

Users have found many ways of circumventing the prohibition, which has been widely criticised and ridiculed. As of Wednesday afternoon, the top trending term in Turkey was a political slogan attacking Mr Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party. Just behind it was a pro-Erdogan term.

From: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-26749374

Related: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/26/turkish-court-lifts-twitter-ban

AK Party uses state, municipality resources for Istanbul rally

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) took full advantage of state and Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality assets for its election rally in Istanbul on Sunday, as it did for previous rallies, violating campaign rules in place for the March 30 local elections and drawing the ire of opposition parties. The opposition believes that the AK Party not only “steals state resources” to finance its crowded rallies, but also engages in unfair competition against its political rivals. “We are faced with an [Prime Minister Recep Tayyip] Erdoğan who has linked his future to protecting his [political] power. He gathers thousands of people at his election rallies to manipulate perception [to create the image that he is still very powerful], and he is using state resources to do this,” said Ruhsar Demirel, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) deputy chairwoman, speaking to Today’s Zaman. In Istanbul on March 23, the municipality mobilized all means at its disposal for the AK Party rally. Dozens of municipality buses were used to carry party supporters to the rally area. The buses, decorated with AK Party flags, had signs indicating that they were “on duty” for the AK Party rally. They refused to accept other passengers and party supporters were not asked to pay the fare for their transport to the rally at Yenikapı Square. City ferries and high-speed ferries also carried thousands of AK Party supporters to the rally area free of charge. Party supporters were also offered free transport on Marmaray, the undersea commuter train line that connects İstanbul’s Asian side to the European side. Some of the entry gates at Marmaray stations were reserved for AK Party supporters going to the rally and announcements were made for several hours that said, “Passengers attending the [AK Party] rally may use these gates at no charge.” The crowd was so large that some supporters who were unable to get on Marmaray trains were asked by security guards to use boats and high-speed ferries. News sources reported that tension erupted between some passengers and security guards when some who wanted to use Marmaray on Sunday but did not plan to attend the AK Party rally were asked to pay a fare. Complaints were made and questions were asked about why AK Party supporters were permitted to benefit from state resources supported with the taxes paid by millions of people. Ayşe Fındık told the Cihan news agency that the allocation of state and municipality resources for the AK Party rally created havoc in Istanbul. “People were asked to pay to use Marmaray yesterday, but it is free of charge today. Buses are not operating because they are carrying [AK] party supporters to the rally. We walked here [Marmaray] from Eminönü [because buses were not running]. This is a sin. This is illegal. They may hold rallies, but they do not have the right to inconvenience people like this. I am trying to get home from work,” she said. People who attended the AK Party rally were also offered transportation free of charge after the rally. For the complete article: http://en.cihan.com.tr/news/AK-Party-uses-state-municipality-resources-for-Istanbul-rally_5463-CHMTM4NTQ2My8xMDA1;+2uoi

The End of Erdogan

16th March 2014 – By Henri J. Barkey. It is hard to imagine how in any society a Prime Minister caught on tape firing journalists because he does not like their point of view or instructing television stations to stop the broadcasting of an opposition leader’s speech in parliament could survive. And this is only the tip of the iceberg of corruption allegations that have been leveled at this particular PM’s ministers, their families, and most critically at him and his own son.

Welcome to Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey. While he’s indirectly conceded the interference with the freedom of the press, the Prime Minister and his stalwarts have engaged in a scorched-earth strategy of blaming a vast conspiracy for the attacks against him. Never mind that ministers have lost their jobs and their sons have been arrested (along with a state-owned bank CEO). Never mind the millions of dollars worth of cash found in houses owned by all these figures, or the taped conversations leaked to the public, mainly through social media outlets, revealing that judicial investigations have been ongoing for sometime. Forget all that: It is not the alleged thieves, crooks, and their enablers who are at fault, but the accusers. So goes the logic in Erdogan’s Turkey. There’s nothing wrong with having millions of dollars and euros stashed at your home or office or elsewhere, and sweetheart deals with shady businessmen are perfectly okay. It’s questioning these practices that is the real threat to the nation.

At the heart of the conspiracy, it is claimed, is a “parallel state” led by Fethullah Gulen, a reclusive cleric who sought refuge in the United States in 1999 when he was persecuted by the then-dominant Turkish military establishment. Gulen and Erdogan had earlier formed an alliance against this common enemy. But now, with the military forced back into its barracks, they have turned on each other. For Erdogan and his supporters this vast conspiracy, instigated by Gulen and his presumed followers in the judiciary and the police force, is aided and abetted by a slew of villains. These include, Americans, Jews, Israel, Germans, neocons, CNN, Financial Times, a variety of international and domestic banks, the Council on Foreign Relations. Even the Queen of England, if you can believe it, has nothing better to do with her time than plot the downfall of the Turkish Prime Minister and his supporters. Why, exactly, would all these people have it in for Erdogan? It’s a mystery, of course.

But let’s set aside these fantasies, at long last. The truth is that Erdogan is the principal and lead actor in his own demise. As good a politician he has been up to recent times, these allegations somehow caught him by surprise. He has been the unchallenged leader of Turkey for a decade. No one has dared cross him, and no one has figured out how to beat him. The opposition has been weak, and the resources he has marshaled have enabled him and his party, the Justice and Development Party, AKP, to build a formidable patronage network that encompasses a vast segment of the Turkish press, business groups, lots of NGOs, think tanks, and segments of the bureaucracy. The money that he and his family members have allegedly collected has not merely gone toward self-enrichment, but also toward financing and building a monumental network of individuals and organizations whose only loyalty is to Erdogan.

Continuous: http://www.the-american-interest.com/articles/2014/03/13/the-end-of-erdogan/