When you can’t get printed, you write on Post-Its

People started to leave post-it notes around to spread the news mass media in Turkey ignores or misrepresents.

The notes in these pictures are about the recent rape cases the accused rapists being released because their child victim did not put up a fight, because their adult victim was already not a virgin, because the accused came to the court wearing a religious head gear and holding a folded prayer mat, because because because….shameful.

korsan bilgi 5 korsan bilgi 4 korsan bilgi 3 korsan bilgi 2korsan bilgi 1


Also see:




They did not ‘loose’ their lives….they were killed

All they did was to use their RIGHT to assembly and voice their FREEDOM of speech. Clearly not allowed in the democracy of Turkey. As they were killed.



“We were struck down, my people, don’t forget us!”

Ali Ismail Korkmaz – was beaten up brutally by a group of civilians in Eskisehir. Was too scared to go to hospital. When he went, he was not seen because he was a protester. They told him he was fine. The next morning he couldn’t speak. He was taken to another hospital and into an operation for brain hemorrhage. He’d been in coma for more than a month. He died on 10 July 2013. Aged 19. 

Ethem Sarisuluk – was shot in the head by a police officer. Ethem did not have a gun in his hand. Despite there being video evidence of the moment of shooting, the officer was released due to ‘self defence’. He died on 12 June 2013. Aged 28. 

Abdullah Comert – was in the protests in Hatay. Conflicting reports came as to whether he died with blunt force to the head or with a bullet to the head. He died on 3 June 2013. Aged 22.

Mehmet Ayvalitas – was in Istanbul. Died under a car that drove into the crowd of protesters. He died on 3 June 2013. Aged 22.

Medeni Yildirim – was protesting the extension of a police station in Lice. He was shot at the back. He died on 28 June 2013. Aged 18.

There are over 9000 injured, about 1000 serious condition, 90+ people have lost their eye(s) due to being hit in the face by gas bombs.

Veteran activists across the world say don’t use the numbers of the dead or injured. People are blind to these numbers. People die all over the world every day.

Can you be blind to this moment when Ali Ismail Korkmaz’s mother heard the news of her son’s death? This is his red jacket he had on him when he was attacked. His mother has been wearing it since.

Alinin annesi

Mucella Yapici, General Secretary of Istanbul Branch-Architects Assoc talks about Gezi

Mucella Yapici has been a key figure in Gezi movement. She is not a professional protester. She is a professional and has been trying since the beginning of the project aiming to turn Gezi into a shopping mall+ complex to serve her duty as a professional and participate in the decision-making….as you do in democracies!

Here is an interview with her in Turkish. What she says in English is below. Summarises the turn of events and why they are important.

Interview with Mücella Yapıcı, Chamber of Architects Istanbul branch Secretary General (Part 1) 28.06.2013

On one night, on the night of May 27-28th, the news arrived to us that they’re digging the park,  in front of Divan Hotel. There wasn’t any constructions planned on that spot in any of the architectural plans, in any of the project plans. We are here in the administrative board and the news arrived that night, that a bulldozer has gotten into the park and it’s smashing everything. We rushed there, as a matter of course, and because we are all architects, we immediately asked ‘Do you have a project? Do you have a permit? Where is your construction supervisor?’ We realized that night that there wasn’t even one authority to speak to in the park, that the bulldozer driver had gone in on his own.

We came back to the park the next morning, and our first action with my architect friend was to ask the constructors, ‘What’s happening here? Did you get a permit with an overnight operation without our consent?’ Again, we couldn’t find any authorities on site. The only person to speak to was the bulldozer driver. No authorities were there! We asked the committee and they said ‘No, there’s no such permit on that site!’

The man: ‘Go out from here! You too! Leave, nothing’s going on here.’

Mücella Yapıcı: ‘This construction is not in any of the plans!’

At 11am, around 20 civilians arrived followed by the riot police a bit later. Very strangely, the police positioned themselves in front of the illegal construction site. They told us to leave and started gassing us. We were gassed all together, including our friend in the red dress (referring to the lady in red in the iconic photograph). The state police was spraying pepper gas on us, forcing us to leave and meanwhile, the bulldozer was getting into the site. Our friends contacted all the MPs. Sırrı Süreyya (MP) came there at that moment and jumped in front of the bulldozer, spoke to the people there and they stopped. So the event was heard this way. People came and joined us. We said we will wait there and we set up tents to be able to stand guard. The next morning, police gas bombed the people sleeping in the tents.

We said ‘Okay, we will leave,’ but at that minute, they attacked us (including the MPs there) with yellow coloured water. We thought we were going to die there.

Then they attacked us with water again when we were reading out the press release and you know all about the rest.

The Taksim Solidarity’s principle is this. We had these principles which are still valid: political parties, conducts are all constituents of this. The constituens nearly reached 200 now. That’s because the solidarity has always three dots at the bottom of it. You could go in and out without anyone editing you. We’re experiencing a fantastic democracy at the moment through the forums in the park. The forums are also elements of the solidarity. There are decisions made at those forums that are genuinely democratic. The forums’ representatives come to us, we all sit together. We don’t have any voting systems. We decide together on the actions we will take. The solidarity has spread so much and now ‘Everywhere is Taksim. Everywhere is solidarity, everywhere is Taksim Solidarity.’ I am very proud of my children and of our youth. I’m very proud. I’m very tired, drained of strength but I’m so satisfied and proud living through all this. I wouldn’t care if I died.


Mucella Yapici was detained on Monday, 8 July and due to her heart condition was released today, 10 July.

This is how you end the fasting on the first day of Ramadan

Another miracle is happening in Turkey today!
With the invitation of Anticapitalist Muslims and Revolutionary Muslims who have been part of the uprising, Earth tables are set in Taksim for the first night of Ramadan. People gathered and brought food and set tables on the floor of Istiklal Street in Taksim and it goes all the way to Gezi Park. It’s a MIRACLE…

You need to understand the schizophrenic duality in Turkey between practicing muslims and those who call themselves secular. There’s been a tense separation between these for a long time. and now for the first time, those who believe, who practice, who doesn’t care, who doesn’t believe come together at the same table to celebrate the first dinner of Ramadan. Wounds of duality are healing.

Everyday we witness a miracle in Turkey these days…

Gezi Spirit is ALIVE: community, diversity, unity, solidarity, dialogue, and love

iftar 0907-4 iftar 0907-3 iftar 0907-2 iftar 0907-1


there was of course at least one TOMA (water cannon) waiting around. why? who knows…

iftar 0907-6 toma iftar 0907-5 toma


AND in Taksim Square itself, there were a few tables organised by the rulers, couldn’t find a picture of actually people sitting at the tables. Mayor of Ankara tweeted this picture below with pride….though Istiklal Street where the above pictures are taken is about 1 mile long and in comparison these tables are nothing, he was also arrogant enough to say in a twit: “well done, see, if you behave yourselves and have your ‘iftar’ like proper people, we don’t interfere“…hah!

The houses of the members of Taksim Solidarity detained yesterday are being searched

Yesterday in the shambles of Gezi Park being closed-open-closed-open, the police detained key figures from Taksim Solidarity including


Arama kararı çıkarılanlar arasında ayrıca Mimarlar Odası’ndan Mücella Yapıcı from Architects Association, Ali Çerkezoğlu, the General Secretary of Istanbul Doctors Association, HDK’dan Haluk Ağabeyoğlu of HDK, Ender İmrek, the Vice Chair of EMEP (Turkey-Labour Party) and  Beyza Metin, Chair of Istanbul branch of Electrical Engineers Association.

The lawyers questioned the search warrant for Yapici’s home: the public prosecutor was not present (as he was busy with searches in 8 separate addresses). When the lawyers pointed this out, there was tension. The police who was present for the search threatened the lawyers with calling for the terrorism branch poilce. The search warrant did not contain what the crime Ms Yapici is accused of and what they police will be looking for. The police did not listen to the lawyers’ objections and entered the home and is continuing the search with lawyers present.

There was no one at Mr Çerkezoğlu’s home but the police broke the door to enter and search the property. Same with Ms Metin’s home.

Police is reported to not to have waited for the lawyers or family of Mr Ağabeyoğlu before starting the search.

For Turkish: http://www.baskahaber.org/2013/07/gozaltndaki-mimar-mucella-yapcnn-evinde.html

For the constituents of Taksim Solidarity see: https://translatingtaksim.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/who-is-in-taksim-solidarity-taksim-dayanisma-group/

An incomplete update: 5-8 July….Gezi Park was closed, re-opened, closed again and people wanting to go in arrested…updated regularly tonight

We’ve been offline since Friday, 5th July. Of course a lot has happened in Turkey [we are not ignoring Egypt but we need to focus on Turkey]….

A lot has happened reminds me what a Turkish businessman I was talking to said some years ago. He said: “they are asking about what long-term credit needs I have. In Turkey, short term is today, medium term is tomorrow, long term is the day after” …not much has changed since then.

Over the last couple of weeks, people have been active in various parks across various cities. They set up ‘forums’ where anyone can take up the floor and talk, plan activities; they have set up desks for information exchange and education; they have set up markets in which people can barter their goods or skills.  The violence had paused, international media had lost interest, got diverted to Egypt but the awakening in Turkey is far from over – even though main media is still not reporting the news in a balanced way or in fact not reporting them at all.

On July 3rd, we translated the news that the court had ruled to stop the demolition of Gezi Park: http://bit.ly/1b8Dt9S

When offering to talk to the protesters, early in June, PM had said the court’s decision would be respected. It’s not clear this promise will be kept.

The park was closed to the public for days.

On Saturday Taksim Solidarity called people to go to the park in line with the court decision. There were attacks by the police and by AKP supporters with machetes and sticks. Later, the AKP supporters become an AKP supporter then became a local shop owner who had not voted AKP but had had enough. His father apologised from Turks and Kurds and everyone who wanted to go to Taksim. He said if AKP had not done all this neither the public neither the businesses would have suffered like this. http://www.gazeteport.com.tr/haber/139064/satirlinin-babasi-sorumlu-akpdir

The police was as brutal on Monday as they had been in June, including beating and arresting several journalists.

Earlier today, after 23 days of closure, Gezi Park was officially opened with the Mayor and Head of Municipality present (note that Mayor is appointed head of municipality is elected). The Mayor made a speech, park was left open for a while. A woman who was there with her husband asked the Mayor if they would be able to kiss in the park. The Mayor said they could if they thought it was in line with the society’s traditions and codes of ethics…

This evening (Monday 8) Taksim Solidarity called for people to go to the Park again. As we are writing this post, news came on twitter and facebook and in the newspaper link below that the park is closed again and

Police have been detained around 20 people including Mucella Yapici from Turkish Chamber of Architects and Ali Cerkezoglu, General Secretariat of Istanbul Medical Association – members of Taksim Solidarity. [as of now, 20:35UK time, the number is over 80]




Bagdat Cad (Street) on the Asian side of Istanbul is crowded with people protesting the attacks in and around Taksim.


CHP, Istanbul MP has just tweeted (just before 8 pm UK time) that CHP MPs are making speeches in the Parliament at this very moment asking for the violence in Taksim to stop but AKP MPs are like a wall, not listening, not showing any reaction


After the machete on Saturday now there is another white-shirted man (white shirt is becoming a symbol of suspected AKP supporters) drew his gun and fired 4 shots into the air.  There is a video of it in the DHA (Dogan New Agency) here: http://www.dha.com.tr/taksim-istiklalde-silah-sesleri-sosyalmedya-son-dakika-haberi_496451.html


People are protesting the police attacks in Istanbul – tonight



From: http://www.sendika.org/2013/07/gezi-parki-kapatildi-polis-saldiriyor-halk-direniyor-dakika-dakika/

Turkish Doctors Association General Secretary, Huseyin Demirdizen said: The most peaceful demonstration in the world has been turned by the government into an illegal activity. Today people went to the park, without carrying gas masks (which become an instrument of crime according to the police) and were attacked.

Bank-Sen (banking sector union) General Secretary, Önder Atay, said: “Our aims are clear. What’s not clear is where this government wants to take the country. The identities of those whom are taken into custody are known. What’s not known is the identity of those carrying machetes.”

A 17 year old man was hit on the head with a gas cannister. He is having a brain haemorrhage and is being operated on in hospital.


Picture below is tweeted by Leigh Turner, British Consul in Istanbul, shows gas canister thrown into British Consulate’s garden. Interesting that while David Cameron said nothing worth saying about the 1000s of canisters used in Turkey in more than a month, the British Consul tweets the first gas canister.

british consulate istanbul

Istanbul Governor (Mayor) Mutlu says you can go into the park to take a walk but don’t wait around.

vali mutlu


There are tweets [20:52 UK time] police was waiting outside the building where Taksim Solidarity [www.taksimdayanisma.org] held their press conference an hour ago and attacted and detained those leaving the building!


Towards midnight (Turkey time), there are reports that the police opened the park again, but attacks continue in the surrounding streets. In the meantime, the Mayor of Ankara is busy tweeting to get the #EUandUSAstophypocricytoEgypt number 1 trend in the world…


22:57 (UK time) – reports about an hour ago that police is increasingly using plastic bullets. http://www.sendika.org/2013/07/gezi-parki-kapatildi-polis-saldiriyor-halk-direniyor-dakika-dakika/

Park was opened about 20 minutes ago!

There are tweets about the police not allowing Mucella Yapici and Sabri Oran to take the medicines they use.