Wir sind hoch erfreut über die Nachricht, dass die Autorin, Übersetzerin und Frauenrechtlerin Ayşe Berktay aus dem Gefängnis entlassen worden ist. Berktay saß zwei Jahre in Untersuchungshaft im Rahmen des KCK-Verfahrens. Ihre Freilassung und die von fünf weiteren Personen wurde gerichtlich am 20.12. verfügt. Die Ermittlungen gegen sie gehen aber weiter. Der ebenso angeklagte Autor und Übersetzer Deniz Zarakolu bleibt dagegen in Haft.
Der internationale PEN ruft erneut dazu auf, alle Anklagepunkte gegen Berktay und Zarakolu fallenzulassen, da die Organisation die Vorwüfe gegen die Autoren, „Mitglied einer terroristischen Vereinigung zu sein“ bzw. „Propaganda für eine terroristische Vereinigung zu betreiben“ für erfunden hält.
Zum Hintergrund, bereitgestellt vom internationalen PEN:
Ayşe Berktay is a writer, translator, women’s rights and anti-war activist. Her published work largely centres on the role of women in the Ottoman Empire and Turkish Republic.Police arrested Ayşe Berktay and raided her home at 5:00 a.m. on 3 October, 2011, seizing personal papers and materials, though no arrest or search warrant had been issued. Berktay was eventually charged with ‘membership of an armed organisation’under Article 314/2 of the Turkish Penal Code; ‘membership of a terrorist organisation’ under Article 5/1 of the Anti-Terror Law; ‘making propaganda for a terrorist organisation’ under Article 7/2 of the Anti-Terror Law; and ‘participating in illegal meetings or demonstrations’ under Article 23/b of the Meetings and Demonstrations Law.
The anti-terror investigation that Berktay has been implicated in centres around the alleged urban wing of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), known as KCK.. This investigation has been used by Turkish prosecutors as a means to pursue those with ideological sympathies for and affiliations to Turkey’s pro-Kurdish political party, the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP). The prosecutors allege that there is an organisational tie between peaceful civilian actors and armed PKK militants, an argument which appears to stem solely from the fact that they a joint ideological interest in pursuing greater rights for Turkey’s Kurdish citizens. Berktay is a BDP member, and is one of thousands of peaceful Kurdish and pro-Kurdish civilians in Turkey with no link to violence or the planning of violent acts that have been categorised as terrorist activity in the KCK investigation. The work she conducted and the meetings and demonstrations she attended on behalf of BDP form the evidence against her. The next hearing of Ayşe Berktay’s trial will be held on 30 January 2014. The main KCK trial in Diyarbakir, which includes human rights lawyer and advocate Muharrem Erbey, recommences on 13 January 2014. The next hearing of another KCK-related trial – of 46 journalists in what is known as the ‘KCK Press Wing trial’ – is set to begin on 14 January 2013.