The Turkish daily Cumhuriyet, a century-old republican opinion newspaper in the fold of Le Monde or El Pais, has published a news report on the court case against the six DIP women. Below we publish an English translation of this news article.
The Çorlu 2nd Assize Court handed downan acquittal decision at the trial for “terrorist propaganda” which had been filed for the expression in the International Women's Day leaflet of women members of the Revolutionary Workers’ Party (DIP): “From Cizre to Sur, from Nusaybin to Idil, we salute all our sisters who raise self-defence against the operations by the state .”
The office of the Çorlu chief public prosecutor sued six woman members of DIPfor the statement in the International Working Women's Day leaflet put out by women members of the party that they were distributing: “From Cizre to Sur, from Nusaybin to Idil, we salute all our sisters who raise self-defence against the operations of the state .”
In the indictment it is argued that: “The state operations in Cizre, Sur, Nusaybin and İdil are against the armed terrorist organization PKK which digs ditches, sets booby traps and enters the houses of people who live there and use them as human shields. Legitimizing the acts of the members of the PKK by evaluating these acts as self-defence and distributing leaflets which state “we salute those who act this way” is a clear support to the PKK terrorist organization.” In pleadings women said they were saluting the struggle that women raise against the violence, rape and other kind of abuses to women, they were not doing terrorist propaganda and they distributed the leaflets on the occasion of the International Women’s Day.
“Women’s self-defence is legitimate”
In the plea of defence given to the court by defendant A.T.D., the following was said: “[Self-defence] is an international right which also has its place in the laws of the Turkish Republic. In [cities like] Sakarya, Kocaeli, and Zonguldak, women who didn’t wait to be murdered by men but defended themselves legitimately were acquitted by courts. This right is valid in Sur, Cizre, İdil and Nusaybin, too. Also it doesn’t matter what kind of men engage in this violence. It’s known that the Gendarmerie Special Operation Forces, the Police Special Operation Forces and shady gangs –such as the Esedullah Team- wrote humiliating and threatening words addressed to women on the walls of the houses which local people were forced to leave. Entering the bedrooms of houses and littering women’s underwear around, writing on the walls and mirrors humiliating words was all done by members of special operations forces for the same reason, and this is a crime. Expressions such as “We’re here girls, but we couldn’t find you!”, “We clothed you in skirts in the winter, we will clothe you in tangas in the summer!”, “Abortion should be free for sluts, otherwise we will have to grapple with their children” are clearly threats of rape. It’s right and legitimate for women to defend themselves against this threat. We defend this today as we defended it yesterday!” The Çorlu 2nd Assize Court decided for an acquittal at the six women’s trial on 13 June 2016.