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Author Topic: Pamuk case highlights Turkey limits on free speech
Babbler # 11061

posted 16 December 2005 08:21 AM      Profile for Clog-boy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Just heard on the news here in the Netherlands that the case described in the article below is ajourned till February...

Pamuk case highlights Turkey limits on free speech

ISTANBUL, Dec 13 (Reuters) - This week's trial of novelist Orhan Pamuk is drawing unprecedented international media attention, but out of the spotlight many other Turkish writers face punishment for expressing dissenting views...

He caused uproar this year in Turkey by saying a million Armenians were killed in World War One massacres and 30,000 Kurds in recent decades. Pamuk, who did not describe the killings as genocide, faces up to 3 years in jail if convicted...

Ankara has always rejected claims that Ottoman forces committed genocide against Armenians but under EU pressure has called for historians to debate the rights and wrongs of the issue...

I wonder what influence the verdict in this case will have for Turkey joining the EU...?

From: Arnhem, The Netherlands | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 478

posted 16 December 2005 08:47 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm trying to think with hope about this situation. There is a real division in Turkey between the leadership of the new government, which is oriented towards Europe, however mindful of Turkey's particularity, and the conservatives who have become alarmed precisely because of the apparent success of reformist views. From what I have read, the divisions exist everywhere, within the government, the judiciary, the military, etc. I wish I knew enough to think that these confrontations signal the last gasps of reactionary resistance, but I don't.

Pamuk is such a wonderful writer. He really is - do read his novels or his recent memoir of growing up in Istanbul. But as Clog-boy's Reuters link says, Pamuk's is not the only case of this kind in Turkey at the moment, and he may have the special protection of his international renown - either that, or he may be in special danger precisely because of the immense international support he has.

So this is a worry, but it is also an inspiring struggle. Watch the snow falling, and think of Orhan Pamuk, and hope.

From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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