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Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary, November 21, 2002

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ADANA 0398

SIPDIS


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PINS PGOV PHUM TU IZ ADANA
SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY, NOVEMBER 21, 2002


1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary for
November 21, 2002. Please note that Turkish press
reports often contain errors or exaggerations;
AmConsulate Adana does not vouch for the accuracy of
the reports summarized here.


POLITICS, SECURITY, HUMAN RIGHTS
--------------------------------


2. DIYARBAKIR FAMILY CHARGES POLICE WITH TORTURE
(Evrensel) The family of a twelve-year-old Diyarbakir
child claimed police had tortured their son while in
custody. The child had been arrested during a police
raid on his home in lieu of his 17-year-old brother.
The family applied to the Human Rights Association
(HRA) (for assistance), alleging police had
blasphemed, kicked and slapped their son, and ordered
him to wait on one foot during his half hour
detention. Father said he would file suit against
(responsible) police officers.


3. PRO-KURDISH EDUCATION DEMONSTRATORS CONVICTED
(Evrensel) Diyarbakir State Security Court convicted
seven Nusaybin (Mardin) people arrested for assisting
and abetting the PKK (KADEK) by "demanding Kurdish-
language education by marching with torches" in mid-
February in Nusaybin. The convicts, who were among
ten people arrested during the march, were sentenced
to three years and nine months' imprisonment. Defense
attorney Muharrem Erbey requested his clients'
acquittal, saying (other) Kurdish education
petitioners had been acquitted under the recent EU
Harmonization Laws. Erbey said he would appeal to the
Supreme Court, which he believes will overturn the
verdict.


4. POLICE OFFICER CONVICTED FOR REVEALING STATE
SECRET

SIPDIS
(Evrensel) Diyarbakir State Security Court convicted
Cizre (Sirnak) Security Directorate Anti-terror Squad
officer M. Sevket Akyildiz for revealing a state
secret by sending the names of DHKP-C and PKK members

SIPDIS
being sought to Milliyet and Star newspapers.
Akyildiz was sentenced to six months' imprisonment
under Article 229 of the Turkish Criminal Code. Two
other defendants who were being tried while at liberty
were acquitted.


5. HRA REPORTS CONTINUED VIOLATIONS
(Evrensel) A report issued by the Ankara chapter of
the Human Rights Association (HRA) said there has not
been a decrease in rights violations in prisons,
including those in the Southeastern provinces of
Adana, Malatya, Iskenderun (Hatay), Batman and Bingol.
The report claimed that, during prison visits,
attorneys had undergone humiliating searches, with
their files seized. According to the report, inmates'
health deteriorated due to arbitrary practices and
they had been denied medical services and treatment.
A relative of an inmate complained that prison guards
/ security forces had kept relatives waiting for
hours, not allowing underwear, socks and sheets into
prisons where these products were sold for relatively
much higher prices.


6. NINETEEN DEFENDANTS RELEASED IN MERSIN NEWROZ CASE
(Bolge) The trial of 25 Mersin people arrested for
"illegal demonstration, pro-PKK slogans and assault on
security forces with sticks and stones" during the
unauthorized March 21 Newroz celebrations in Mersin
continued at the Adana State Security Court. The
defendants were among 148 suspects arrested during the
celebrations who are being tried in groups of 25
people at a time. Only 19 of the defendants being
tried in custody appeared for the hearing during which
they denied ties to the PKK and requested their
release. Their attorneys also requested the
defendants' release. After a break, the court
released the 19 defendants who were in custody and
adjourned the trail until a later date due to missing
documents in the file. Prison terms of one to three
years are demanded for the defendants.
HOLTZ

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