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Women and Children in Prison

Recent reports from the Journalist and Writers Foundation in Turkey and the Stockholm Center for Freedom have estimated the number of women in Turkish prisons is a staggering 17,000 along with over 660 children. Official records indicate that 23 percent of these children are infants less than a year old. Dr. Alan Mendoza, executive director of the Henry Jackson Society (a British foreign policy think tank) said “prison is no place for children in any civilized country”.

These reports have questioned the basis for the detainment and imprisonment of these women, as well as the timing of their arrests, in some cases shortly after giving birth. Many of these women have been held without charges being pressed and without access to legal representation, and in some cases, access to their family.

Reports from within Turkey have shown images of security officials waiting outside hospital rooms for mothers to be discharged in order to detain them and their newborn children. With the critical need of preventing bacteria during a child’s first months, questions about the conditions of the prisons where these women are held with their newborn children have also arisen in numerous media reports. Since “extra food, books, phone calls, trips to the hospital, and bathroom supplies are all added to inmates’ prison bills” some women with poor financial situation cannot afford basic hygienic items such as sanitary pads (which they are not provided).

The prison conditions are not satisfactory for the well being of women, and especially children. They are forced to stay in overcrowded rooms, denied health care, missing fresh air and have to share bed and meal.

Many inmates sleep on the floor. Human Rights Association (IHD) has stated that in Turkey, 1025 prisoners are in poor health, 357 of which are seriously ill. Nonetheless, at a parliamentary hearing, it was revealed that at least five women have suspiciously died at the women’s prison in Kocaeli’s Gebze district .

We wholeheartedly condemn this violation of basic human rights of not only the imprisoned women but also these children who are being subjected to a life behind bars without cause.

Read AST’s report on women and children in prison:

Download AST’s presentation on women and children in prison:

Download AST’s newsletter on women and children in prison:

News and reports on women and children in prison:

We urge everyone to take action. Express your views or send attached statement below to following addresses:

1. Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau
Email: justin.trudeau@parl.gc.ca

2. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada, Chrystia Freeland
Email: Chrystia.Freeland@parl.gc.ca

3. Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship of Canada, Ahmed D. Hussen
Email: Ahmed.Hussen@parl.gc.ca

4. Foreign Affairs and International Development Committee of Canada, Robert D. Nault
Email: Bob.Nault@parl.gc.ca

5. Justice and Human Rights Committee of Canada, Anthony Housefather
Email: Anthony.Housefather@parl.gc.ca

6. Embassy of Canada to Turkey in Ankara
Email: ankra@international.gc.ca

Download sample statement as a word document:

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UN Working Group urges AKP govt to release Kaçmaz Family immediately and unconditionally

The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention of the UN Human Rights Council has called on the Turkish government to immediately release Mesut Kaçmaz and Meral Kaçmaz, a couple that was abducted from their home after midnight in Lahore on September 27, 2017 and deported illegally by the Pakistani government to Turkey just two days before their scheduled appearance before a Pakistani court.

The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has released its 16-page opinion concerning Mesut Kaçmaz and Meral Kaçmaz and their two daughters.

The UN body called on Turkey to take the steps necessary to remedy the situation of Mesut Kaçmaz, Meral Kaçmaz and the two minors without delay and bring them into conformity with the relevant international norms, including those set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The UN body also called on the government of Pakistan and the government of Turkey to accord Mr. and Mrs. Kaçmaz and the two minors an enforceable right to compensation and other reparations, including for the impact on their psychological integrity from having been arrested, secretly detained and deported.

For more detailed information about the risks supporters of the Gulen Movement experience, please look at the report prepared by the Advocates of Silenced Turkey on the current and possible threats supporters of the Gulen Movement face abroad titled “I Cannot Say We Are Absolutely Safe Even Abroad.”

Download the report as pdf: http://silencedturkey.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/AST_Report_Threats_Gulen-Movement.pdf

We strongly request Turkish authorities to take all necessary steps to immediately and unconditionally release Kacmaz family.

We urge everyone to take action. Express your views or send attached statement below to following relevant Turkish authorities.

Download sample statement: AST_letter_Kacmaz family

1. Republic of Turkey, Ministry of Justice
Website: http://www.justice.gov.tr
Email Address: info@adalet.gov.tr
Phone: +90 (0312) 417 77 70
Fax: +90 (0312) 419 33 70

2. Republic of Turkey, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Website: http://www.mfa.gov.tr/
Contact form: http://www.mfa.gov.tr/contact-us.en.mfa
Phone: +90 (312) 292 10 00

3. Union of Turkish Bar Associations
Website: https://www.barobirlik.org.tr
Email Address: barobirlik@barobirlik.org.tr
Phone: +90 (312) 292 59 00
Fax: +90 (312) 286 31 00

4. Presidency of the Constitutional Court
Website: http://www.anayasa.gov.tr
Email Address: bilgi@anayasa.gov.tr
Phone: +90 (312) 463 73 00
Fax: +90 (312) 463 74 00

5. Court of Cassation
Website: https://www.yargitay.gov.tr
Email Address: iletisim@yargitay.gov.tr
Phone: +90 (312) 416 10 00

6. Turkish Embassy in Washington D.C.
Website: http://vasington.be.mfa.gov.tr/Mission
Email Address: embassy.washingtondc@mfa.gov.tr
Phone: +1 202 612 67 00
Fax: +1 202 612 67 44


UN Human Rights Council calls on Turkish gov’t to release Kaçmaz couple immediately

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Protests held for safe recovery of Turkish teacher, his family

Turkish family of PakTurk Schools director abducted in Pakistan: rights group

Missing Turkish teacher ‘deported from Pakistan’

A Turkish family has disappeared in Pakistan, and suspicion turns to intelligence agencies






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UN Working Group calls on AKP govt to release Kaçmaz Family

Citing the state of emergency it has declared after the coup attempt in July 2016, the AKP government has further exacerbated its heavy human rights violations following the corruption operations of December 17/25 and the June 7th general elections. Cases of abduction have lately been added to widespread torture, deaths in custody, and extrajudicial killings.

Teachers, doctors, businessmen, mothers, and children, who legally work and live in different countries away and disconnected from the unrest in Turkey, are abducted by paramilitary agents through clandestine plots and unlawfully handed over to the Turkish government.

Pakistan was one of the places where kidnappings were carried out as a part of these global criminal activities conducted by the members of the Turkish intelligence and consular staff upon the orders of President Erdogan. Mesut Kaçmaz, the former director of the Pak-Turk schools, was abducted from his home in Lahore with his family early in the morning. The scandal was protested both in Pakistan and in many countries around the world, but Mesut Kaçmaz and his family, who had been under UN protection, were deported unlawfully despite the decision of the Lahore Supreme Court.

Having completed its evaluation of the situation, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has made a strong call to the Turkish government and requested the Kaçmaz Family to be released immediately and unconditionally. (http://www.ohchr.org/_layouts/15/Wopi…)

The kidnapping scandal has been detailed in the declaration as follows: “15 ‘officers’ in plain clothes, including several female officers providing no identification raid the house of the Kaçmaz family. Officers were pushing and shoving in arresting the family, including Mr. Kaçmaz who was protesting the raid. … The officers blindfolded them all and later slipped hoods over their heads – including on Mrs. Kaçmaz and the two minors. … Kaçmaz family was kept at an unknown location prevented from going outside and did not see daylight for 17 days. Kaçmaz family was forcibly deported on October 14, 2017, and flown on a special, unmarked aircraft from Islamabad to Istanbul, Turkey. While Pakistani staff transported the family to the flight, there were only Turkish agents on board the aircraft.”

The UN Working Group, which assessed “that the arrest, detention, and deportation of the Kaçmaz family was carried out by the Government of Pakistan, through agents acting on its behalf and with its support, and at the request of the Turkish authorities”, underlined that the family had been detained and deported in violation of the Pakistani law, and noted that the Government of Pakistan was “responsible for its own actions in the arrest, detention, and deportation of the Kaçmaz family, as well as the subsequent violations of their rights in Turkey”.

The declaration also emphasized that “the Government of Turkey is jointly responsible with the Government of Pakistan for the arrest, detention, and deportation of the Kaçmaz family to Turkey without any legal basis” and both governments have breached the Human Rights Universal Declaration and the Covenant through their arbitrary acts.

The Working Group which has called the Government of Turkey to immediately and unconditionally release Mesut Kaçmaz and Meral Kaçmaz, and respect their rights to leave Turkey, also asked for compensation from Islamabad and Ankara for the detention and deportation of the Kaçmaz family including any possible psychological effects.

The declaration which sets a precedent for other cases of abduction by the AKP government has also stated that “Several United Nations bodies have documented widespread violations of human rights in Turkey, particularly since the attempted coup in July 2016. These include extrajudicial killings in the context of counter-terrorism operations, arbitrary detention of people arrested under the state of emergency measures, the use of torture and ill-treatment during pre-trial detention, and mass dismissal of teachers accused of being associated with the Gülen movement.”

The video was prepared by 30 Plus TV.

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BM’den AKP iktidarına ültimatom: ‘Kaçmaz ailesini derhal ve şartsız serbest bırakın!’

Birleşmiş Milletler Keyfi Gözaltı Çalışma Grubu, yaşattığı ağır insan hakları ihlallerini ilan ettiği OHAL döneminde daha da şiddetlendiren AKP iktidarına ültimatom niteliğinde bir çağrı yaptı. Bir deklarasyon yayımlayan grup, Pakistan’dan kaçırılan eğitimci Mesut Kaçmaz ve ailesinin derhal ve şartsız olarak serbest bırakılmasını istedi.

Kaçırılma skandalı, deklarasyonda ‘Kaçmaz ailesinin evine, aralarında birkaç kadın memurun da bulunduğu, 15 “memur” hiçbir kimlik göstermeksizin sivil kıyafetlerle baskın düzenledi. Görevliler aileyi tutuklamak için, baskını protesto eden Mesut Kaçmaz da dahil olmak üzere, itip kakıyorlardı. Memurlar, Bayan Kaçmaz ve iki küçük çocuk da dâhil hepsinin gözlerini bağladı ve başlarına çuval geçirdi. Kaçmaz ailesi 17 gün boyunca dışarı çıkmalarına ve gün ışığını görmelerine izin verilmeyen bir yerde tutuldu. Kaçmaz ailesi 14 Ekim 2017’de zorla sınır dışı edildi ve İslamabad’dan İstanbul’a kadar özel, işaretsiz bir uçakla uçtu. Pakistanlı personel aileyi uçağa ulaştırırken, uçakta sadece Türk ajanlar vardı.’ ifadeleriyle ayrıntılı bir şekilde yeraldı.

‘Kaçmaz ailesinin tutuklanması, gözaltına alınması ve sınır dışı edilmesi, Pakistan Hükümeti tarafından, hükümet adına ve onun desteğiyle hareket eden temsilciler aracılığıyla ve Türk makamlarının talebi üzerine gerçekleştirilmiştir’ değerlendirmesini yapan Birleşmiş Milletler Keyfi Gözaltı Çalışma Grubu, ailenin Pakistan yasaları ihlal edilerek tutuklandığını ve sınır dışı edildiğini, Pakistan Hükümetinin, Kaçmaz ailesinin alıkonulması ve sınır dışı edilmesine ilişkin eylemlerinden ve ayrıca Türkiye’deki haklarının ihlallerinden sorumlu olduğuna dikkat çekti.

‘Çalışma Grubu, Pakistan Hükümeti gibi Türkiye Hükümeti’nin de, Kaçmaz ailesinin yasal dayanağı bulunmayan bir biçimde yakalanması, gözaltına alınması ve Türkiye’ye sınır dışı edilmesinden müştereken sorumlu olduğunu tespit etmiştir’ vurgusu yapılan deklarasyonda her iki hükümetin İnsan Hakları
Evrensel Beyannamesi ve Sözleşmesine aykırı ve keyfi hareket ettiklerine dikkat çekiliyor.

Türkiye Hükümetini Mesut Kaçmaz ve Meral Kaçmaz’ı derhal ve şartsız olarak serbest bırakmaya ve Kaçmaz ailesinin Türkiye’den ayrılma hakkına saygı göstermeye çağıran Birleşmiş Milletler Keyfi Gözaltı Çalışma Grubu, İslamabad ve Ankara’dan Kaçmaz Ailesinin gözaltına alınmalarından sınır dışı edilmelerine kadar kaynaklanan psikolojik etkiler de dâhil olmak üzere gasp edilen bütün haklarının tazmin edilmesini istedi.

AKP iktidarının bizzat içinde olduğu diğer kaçırma vakaları için de emsal niteliği taşıyan deklarasyonda ayrıca ‘Pek çok Birleşmiş Milletler kuruluşu, özellikle de Temmuz 2016’daki darbe girişiminden bu yana, Türkiye’deki yaygın insan hakları ihlallerini belgelemişlerdir. Terörle mücadele operasyonları kapsamındaki yargısız infazlar, acil durum önlemleri altında tutuklanan kişilerin keyfi olarak gözaltına alınmaları, duruşma öncesi tutukluluk esnasında işkence ve kötü muamele ve Gülen hareketiyle ilişkili olmakla suçlanan öğretmenlerin toplu işten çıkarılması, bu hak ihlalleri arasındadır’ vurgusu yapılıyor.

Video 30 ARTI TV tarafından hazırlanmıştır.

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TanerKılıç, honorary chair of @Amnesty International Turkey, has been wrongfully imprisoned for 1 year. He’s become a potent symbol of the thousands of human rights activists unjustly jailed in #Turkey’s post-coup crackdown

Video prepared by Amnesty.

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Story of Gokhan Acikkollu

Animatic story of Turkish teacher Gokhan Acikkollu who was tortured to death under police custody in Turkey.

Video prepared by Huddled Masses.

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Art Contest Exhibition in Canada

May 23, 2018 | Chicago

On May 23,2018, art work submitted to Advocates of Silenced Turkey’s Human Rights Violation in Turkey Art Contest 2018 were exhibited in Toronto, Canada.

Check out the art work:

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Seriously ill educator still held in Manisa prison for 22 months

Isa Kara, 54-year-old, has worked 34 years as a teacher and director of Ministry of National Education’s Manisa provincial directorate. He was fired from his job with a decree issued by the Turkish government after the alleged coup attempt in July 2016.

Kara was imprisoned in October 2016 on coup charges. Despite his illnesses, he was held in pre-trial detention for 29 days and later transferred to Manisa prison. Kara is partly paralyzed and suffers from serious heart problems. Kara’s doctor had indicated that he needs to stay away from stress due to his heart problem. In an e-mail, it is claimed that two months before he was put in pre-trial detention, he had his first Angiogram. On April 12, 2018, he was transferred by the prison management to İzmir Katip Çelebi University Hospital where he had his second Angiogram. After spending 45 days in the hospital, he was sent back to İzmir Buca F Type Prison.

Kara’s family submitted 15 requests for the release of Isa Kara due to his health condition, however, all of them were rejected. The prison conditions are not satisfactory for the well-being of Kara. The prisons are overcrowded and are not sanitary for such a seriously ill patient. Kara’s doctor has noted numerous times that Isa Kara is not receiving proper treatment under current prison conditions.

Mr. Kara is being accused of membership in the Gülen movement, accused by the Turkish government of masterminding a coup attempt on July 15, 2016. The movement denies any involvement, and the Turkish government has rejected parliamentary motion to investigate the coup. Right after the coup, without any just hearing, the Turkish government initiated a widespread purge against the sympathizers of the movement.

There have been many cases of suicide and death in prison, some of which were found to be suspicious, of people who have been affected by the purge of Gülen movement followers. Isa Kara’s family is in the apprehension of severe worries about his health condition as they reminisced about the victims who died for they were not given proper and necessary treatment and were supposed to be given parole due to fatal conditions in jail.

For more detailed information about the prison conditions in Turkey, please take a look at the report prepared by Platform for Peace & Justice titled “A Comprehensive Report on the Prison Conditions in Turkey”.

Download the report as pdf: http://www.platformpj.org/wp-content/uploads/IN-PRISON-2017.pdf

We urge international bodies and human rights organizations to take all necessary steps to request for pending trial to be taken into consideration due to Isa Kara’s health condition mentioned above.

We urge everyone to take action. Express your views or send attached statement below to following relevant individuals and organizations.

Download sample statement as a word document: AST_letter_Isa Kara

1) U.S. Department of State
Email: https://register.state.gov/contactus/contactusform
Phone: (202) 647-6575
Twitter: @StateDept
Website: https://www.state.gov/

2) United Nations Human Rights Council (UN HRC)
Email: civilsociety@ohchr.org
Phone: (+41) 22 917 9656
Twitter: @UN_HRC
Website: www.ohchr.org/hrc

3) Human Rights Watch
Twitter: @hrw
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HumanRightsWatch
NY Address:350 Fifth Avenue, 34th floor New York, NY 10118-3299 USA
Tel: +1-212-290-4700
Fax: +1-212-736-1300

Emma Daly, Communications Director
Tel: +1-212-216-1835
Fax: +1-212-736-1300

4) Human Rights Foundation
Twitter: @HRF
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/humanrightsfoundation/
New York Address:350 5th Ave., #4515 New York, NY, 10001
Phone Number: (212) 246-8486

5) Freedom House
Twitter: @FreedomHouseDC
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FreedomHouseDC
Phone: 202-296-5101
Fax: 202-293-2840

Annie Boyajian, Advocacy Manager

6) Amnesty International
Twitter: @amnestyusa
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amnestyusa

7) International Federation for Houman Rights
Twitter: @fidh_en
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FIDH.HumanRights
110 East 42nd street, Suite 1309 NY 10017 New-York
Phone Number: 001 646 395 7103

8) International Court of Justice
Email: information@icj-cij.org
Phone: (+31) 70 302 23 23
Fax: (+31) 70 364 99 28
Twitter: @CIJ_ICJ
Website: http://www.icj-cij.org/en


“Paralyzed teacher being held in Manisa prison for 22 months over coup charges”

“21 aydır tutuklu bulunan eğitimci İsa Kara sağlık sorunları nedeniyle zor günler geçiriyor”

“Ağır hasta 34 yıllık öğretmen cezaevinde ölüme terk edildi”






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Mother’s Day 2018



Tens of thousands of women, including housewives, journalists, teachers, academics, physicians, healthcare professionals, and businesswomen have been arbitrarily detained. Many of the detained women in the prison system have been routinely subjected to torture and ill-treatment. Women speaking out on abuses face threats, intimidation, persecution, and imprisonment.

Videos prepared by Advocates of Silenced Turkey.

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A Rogue State Under Erdogan

A Rogue State Under Erdogan: Turkey’s global witch-hunt and unlawful abductions of dissidents abroad

The Turkish government has been conducting a witch-hunt against the dissenting groups under the state of emergency since the coup attempt in July 2016.

Recently, Turkey has been hunting down individuals living in other countries.

Teachers, doctors, businessmen, mothers, and children, who legally work and live in different countries away and disconnected from the unrest in Turkey, are abducted through clandestine plots and unlawfully handed over to the Turkish government.

Here are some of the criminal “rogue state” activities conducted by the members of the Turkish intelligence and consular staff upon the orders of President Erdogan.

Video prepared by 30 Plus.

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