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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Anti-war human rights activists on trial accused under the Terrorism Act

Front for Rights and Freedoms


On 11th December 2002 police from Scotland Yard’s SO13 anti-terror branch carried out a series of dawn raids at several addresses throughout the country. The raids resulted in the arrests of seven people, six from Turkey and one from Britain. They were then taken to the high security Paddington Green police station where they were interrogated for a whole week.

The official explanation for these arrests was that the police were carrying out an operation so as to gather information about the activities of a revolutionary left organisation from Turkey called the DHKP-C (Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front), which was proscribed by the British state in March 2001. Although one of them was released without charge the remaining six were charged with membership of a proscribed organisation and raising funds for a proscribed organisation, which carries a maximum ten-year sentence. To date the investigation has focused on activities that are entirely legitimate and legal within Europe and Turkey itself. Supporting the struggle for democracy in Turkey and highlighting the human rights abuses in Turkey within this country have become criminalised under anti-democratic draconian legislation. The British state is attacking democrats so as to justify its murderous wars; the so-called war on terror is nothing more than a war on freedom of thought and association. A central part of the police’s case against the accused is the selling of a Turkish language magazine called Bread and Justice, which is entirely legal in Turkey and the rest of Europe. The police are claiming that money raised through the selling of this magazine was being sent to the DHKP-C when in actual fact documents, which the police have in their possession, show that the money from the sales of these magazines was being sent back to the editor of the magazine in Istanbul. Some of the other evidence in the case includes a photograph of someone playing guitar at a concert and surveillance records of people on a May Day march in London.

Although all of the accused are out on bail it is with some stringent restrictions. Two of the bail conditions are that the defendants are not allow to posses, distribute or assist in the distribution of two entirely legal magazines Ekmek ve Adalet (Bread and Justice) and Vatan (Homeland). The only crime that these magazines have committed is to be anti-war, anti-NATO, anti-IMF, being against F-type isolation prisons and being for the struggle of the people. In a recent development the police have visited over 80 people asking them to become informants and to make statements against the defendants. The police have threatened them with the loss of their jobs and homes if they do not collaborate but rather than collaborate they are standing by the accused.

The defendants are next appearing at Bow Street Magistrates court on Tuesday 8th April at 10am. We call upon and democrats, leftists and human rights defenders to attend the hearing to show your solidarity.

 

 

 

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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



 

 

Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the dangers of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of 'crackpot' than the stigma of conformity. And on issues that seem important to you, stand up and be counted at any cost.
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Index: Current Articles



7 April 2003

 

Other Articles From This Issue:

 

Adams Will Tell Bush He's Anti-War
Eoin O'Broin

 

Stand Firm
Davy Carlin

 

Anti-War Human Rights Activists on Trial
FRF

 

First We Take Basra, And Then We Take ...Basra Again
Anthony McIntyre

 

Belfast - Building an Anti-War Movement

Davy Carlin

 

28 March 2003

 

"Stop the Deportations of the Irish in America!"
Sean O'Neill

 

The Horse's Head
Anthony McIntyre

 

"Sprint to Baghdad"
Karen Lyden Cox

 

Bombing Basra to Baghdad
Anthony McIntyre

 

Operation 'Coxswain' Continues

PATA

 

 

 

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