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Turkey

TURKEY: Gay conscripts will no longer need to have rectal examinations or show sex pictures

The Turkish army exempts gay men from serving in the army, since they categorize homosexuality as a ‘psycho-sexual disorder’. A new change in the process will allow men to declare they are gay in an interview without undergoing humiliating tests such as rectal examination or showing sex pictures. Getting an exemption still puts gays in danger of future discrimination, since it means their sexual orientation is listed on their official record.

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Conscientious Objector Tarhan Released Facing Civil Death

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Photo: BianetPhoto: BianetConscientious Objector Mehmet Tarhan was detained in Aydın province and then was released on probation. Tarhan commented: “Civil death started for me.”

Conscientious Objector and LGBTI activist Mehmet Tarhan was detained in Aydın province and then released.

Tarhan talked to bianet that he was placed a charge of being deserter in March 2015 and a warrant was issued.

Tarhan was taken to prosecution and then to recruiting office in Aydın province in Aegean Region of Turkey:

“They granted me two days to be enlisted and then released me in the recruiting office. It means the time of “civil death” started for me.

International CO symposium held in Istanbul

Vicdani Ret Derneği, the Turkish CO Association, held an international symposium on conscientious objection (CO), on 5-6 September in Istanbul. The meetings were packed, and at the end of the symposium, over 20 COs went to Galatasaray Square and publicly declared their conscientious objection.

TURKEY: CO Symposium - HDP submits CO law to parliament

In early September, Conscientious Objectors from across the world gathered in Istanbul for a CO Symposium. As violence of the Turkish state military against the Kurdish community in Turkey increases, CO's gathered to discuss their objection to war and it's causes, before making public declarations of their objection in Galatasaray Square. For a full report, click here.

HDP submits CO law to parliament

In Turkey, the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) have submitted a law to the Turkish parliament, proposing that Turkey acknowledges the right to conscientious objection. HDP joined the parliament in Turkey in the most recent round of elections in June 2015, when the ruling AKP lost their parliamentary majority. Turkey does not currently recognise the right to conscientious objection, and people who declare conscientious objection are.... In 2011, the Turkish Ministry of Justice announced a draft proposal that would legalise conscientious objection, following pressure from the European Court of Human Rights, but the draft was withdrawn.

The proposed law would allow CO's to work for any public institution, NGO, or other organisation working in the public interest. CO's would be paid, covered by welfare benefits and social security, and not be discriminated against.

Two CO's killed in attack

On 20 July, an attack against civilians in the southern Turkish town of Suruç killed dozens of people. Conscientious objectors Alper Sapan and Polen Ünlü were amongst those killed. WRI affiliate Vicdani Ret Derneği have released a statement that includes Polen and Alper's CO declarations, which we quote here:

“I don’t want my brothers, my sisters and the people that I love to be a part of that dirty war which has been implemented by the state. That war does not murder only men, but it murders women as well. For this reason, I am declaring my conscientious objection.” (Polen Ünlü)

“For the world where there is no war, no nation, no border; for freedom, I am listening to my heart and rejecting the military service. Let’s destroy militarism before militarism destroys all of us.” (Alper Sapan)

Read more here.

Sources

For more information, see: Hurriyet Daily News, August 2015, "HDP proposes law on conscientious objection", http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/hdp-proposes-law-on-conscientious-objection.aspx?pageID=238&nID=86549&NewsCatID=339

Two conscientious objectors amongst those killed in Suruç

Polen ÜnlüPolen ÜnlüOn 20 July, an attack against civilians in the southern Turkish town of Suruç killed dozens of people. Conscientious objectors Alper Sapan and Polen Ünlü were amongst those killed. WRI affiliate Vicdani Ret Derneği have released a statement that includes Polen and Alper's CO declarations, which we quote here:

Two Conscientious Objectors, Polen Ünlü and Alper Sapan, were murdered in the Suruç massacre

Polen ÜnlüPolen ÜnlüStatement from WRI affiliate Vicdani Ret Derneği

On 20th of July, many young people from different cities took the road for the re-construction of Kobanê which is the city that has been resisting against the attacks of ISIS for several months. Those young people wanted to re-build the city which was destroyed by war and bring life back to the children who are sentenced to death in the pillaged land. Alper SapanAlper Sapan

But they could not success. Everlasting war policy turned to a bomb and exploded right at the middle of the crowd of young people who were resisting to build the peace. Tens of people lost their lives and hundreds of them were injured.

One of those young people who had lost her life is Polen Ünlü who declared her conscientious objection in 2012 by saying “That war does not murder only men, but it murders women as well.” Alper Sapan is also one of those young people who had murdered in the massacre, and also one of conscientious objectors who declared his conscientious objection in May 2014 by saying “For the world where there is no war, no nation, no border; for freedom, I am listening to my heart and rejecting the military service.”

Polen Ünlü

  • Polen ÜnlüPolen Ünlü

Pays:
  • Turquie
Activist type:
  • objecteur/trice de conscience
Statut:
  • Declared objector


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Alper Sapan

Pays:
  • Turquie
Activist type:
  • objecteur/trice de conscience
Statut:
  • Declared objector

CO Declarations:

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Solidarity with those killed in Suruç

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Alper SapanAlper SapanYesterday's attack against civilians in the southern Turkish town of Suruç killed dozens of people. Conscientious objectors Alper Sapan and Polen Ünlü  were amongst those killed. In solidarity and respect, we share news from WRI member Merve Arkun:

Two of our CO friends were murdered by a suicide bomb attack that has happened in Pirsus (Suruç, Urfa, Turkey), today.

More than 31 Polen ÜnlüPolen Ünlüpeople travelling to Kobanê to support resistance against ISIS have died. At least 100 were heavily wounded.

Here is his Alper Sapan's CO declaration:
I am Alper Sapan. I am an anarchist who 19 years old. I am against the injustice, exploitation and oppression of the state. I am rejecting violence and the state. I am listening to the voice of my conscience and objecting the military system for a world that no borders, no wars and no nations. I will not die, I will not kill for anybody and will not be anybody's soldier.

Before militarism ends our lives let's end militarism.

Information about Polen Ünlü is still being translated into English. You can find information in Turkish here.

via Vicdani Ret Derneği (Conscientious Objection Association)

Turquie : nouvelle loi sur la sécurité et esprit militaire du maintien de l’ordre

Une nouvelle loi sur la sécurité intérieure donnant des pouvoirs draconiens à la police est entrée en vigueur en Turquie. L’autorité de la police se trouve considérablement accrue en particulier en matière extra juridique. La loi ne permet plus de mesures appropriées avec lesquelles les citoyens se protègeraient des abus de ce pouvoir.

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