Ayşe Çelik, a teacher from Turkey's southeastern province of Diyarbakır, has been sentenced to prison on charge of "propagandizing for a terrorist organization" after she called Beyaz Show, a live talk show, and said, "Children and mothers are killed here. Do not keep silent."
At a time when the ruling of the Constitutional Court is awaited, the 10-day additional time request submitted by the attorneys of Çelik, who is expected to be imprisoned today (April 20), has been rejected.
CHP MP Altıok: "We request that the law give a ruling in favor of the innocent and humanity"
A group of MPs including Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Diyarbakır MP Feleknas Uca and main opposition party Republican People's Party (CHP) İzmir MP Zeynep Altıok went to Diyarbakır Courthouse with Ayşe Çelik in the afternoon today.
Speaking to bianet about the case of Ayşe Çelik, CHP MP Zeynep Altıok has said, "A meeting decision was previously made for the interlocutory ruling of the Constitutional Court. Since that meeting was not held, a request for an additional time of 10 days was submitted. They have rejected it. Therefore, Ayşe teacher will surrender [to prison] today, at the end of the working hours. As she will take her baby with her to prison, we are heading to her home to pack her belongings. After that, she will surrender."
Altıok has also added, "No crime has been committed after all. The right thing is that the law be enforced. We request that the law give a ruling in favor of the innocent and humanity."
"The baby should be provided with proper nourishment"
Zeynep Altıok has also addressed the state of Ayşe Çelik's 6-month-old baby, who will go into prison with her. Altıok has said, "The nourishment of the baby should be paid particular attention. She has to be fed with special foods. That is why, her preparation is important now. She suffers from multiple allergies. The baby should be provided with her baby food and proper nourishment."
A viewer identifying herself as Ayşe Çelik, a teacher, joined the program via phone on January 8 and said, "Children are dying, don't remain silent".
The host of the program, Beyazıt Öztürk, had the audience give an applause for Çelik and said "We are trying our best to make it heard. Your words have been a lesson for us. We will continue to do more. Hopefully your peace wishes will come true as soon as possible".
Following the incident, the Diyarbakır Chief Prosecution started investigating Ayşe Çelik on the charge of "terror propaganda", and the Bakırköy Chief Prosecution launched an investigation into the host Beyazıt Öztürk and Ayşe Çelik over "terror propaganda" as well.
30 people including academics, writers, artists and intellectuals who supported the idea that teacher Çelik's comments and demands did not constitute a crime, had symbolically denounced themselves before İstanbul Bakırköy Court and said "If the words of teacher Çelik constitute a crime, we will be a party to this crime".
On April 27, 2016, a lawsuit was also opened against the supporters, namely: Ahmet Dindar, Ayşe Erzan Silier, Ayşegül (Akış) Devecioğlu, Ayşegül İyidoğan, Bayram Bahri Belen, Dilek Gökçin, Ercan İpekçi, Ergin Cinmen, Ferhat Tunç, Gençay Gürsoy, Gülseren Onanç, Gülşen Denizhan, Gürhan Ertür, Gürkan Develi, Halim Bulutoğlu, İbrahim Akın, İbrahim Sinemillioğlu, Kemal Özgül, Mahmut Konuk, Mehmet Tursun, Mevlüt Ülgen, Murat Çelikkan, Nazmiye Özen, Nergiz Ovacık, Neşe Yaşın, Nil Özsoy Dindar, Orhan Alkaya, Orhan Silier, Oya Baydar, Perihan Pulat, Pınar Önen, Şanar Yurdatapan, Sibel Özbudun Demirer, Süleyman Eryılmaz, Temel Demirer, Türkcan Baykal, Üner Eyüboğlu and Vecdi Sayar.
Trial began on September 23, 2016
The hearing in the trial of Ayşe Çelik, the person in charge of the TV channel and the above mentioned civil disobedients began on September 23, 2016. Çelik in her statement of defence, stood behind her words and stated that demanding peace could not constitute a crime.
On April 26, 2017, Bakırköy 2nd Heavy Criminal Court sentenced Çelik to 1 year and 3 months in prison on the charge of "propagandizing for a terrorist organization". The producer of the TV programme and the civil disobedients were acquitted. (ŞA/SD)
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