Turkey: PEN to observe sociologist Pınar Selek’s hearing

Representatives from our sister PEN centres will be attending the trial hearing of sociologist Pınar Selek in Istanbul tomorrow

On 3 October 2014, colleagues from Danish PEN, PEN American Center, PEN International and PEN Turkey will be present at the 15th High Criminal Court in Istanbul for the trial of Turkish sociologist and feminist Pınar Selek. Selek is facing trial for the fifth time in 16 years over a 1998 explosion that killed seven and injured 100 in the Istanbul Spice Bazaar. Selek has been acquitted of all charges three times (in 2006, 2008 and 2011) due to the testimony of expert witnesses, though courts have ordered retrials after each of these acquittals. Her fourth trial resulted in a conviction in January 2013 when Selek was handed an aggravated life sentence, although this conviction was overturned by Turkey’s Supreme Court of Appeals on 11 June 2014 on procedural grounds.

Selek has fled Turkey as a result of the judicial harassment against her and now lives abroad. PEN calls on the Turkish courts to end Selek’s 16 year ordeal and to acquit her of all charges in the absence of any reliable evidence implicating her in the explosion.

For further information on Selek’s ordeal, please visit the PEN International website.

TAKE ACTION: Share on Facebook, Twitter and other social media

Please send appeals immediately:

  • Protesting the continuing judicial harassment of Pınar Selek after 16 years on trial and multiple acquittals;
  • Expressing concern that, in the absence of any conclusive or reliable evidence, the trial against Selek contravenes her right to a fair trial as guaranteed under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the European Convention on Human and Democratic Rights, to which Turkey is a state party;
  • Calling on the Turkish courts to end Selek’s 16 year ordeal and to acquit her of all charges in the absence of any reliable evidence implicating her in the explosion.

Appeals to:

Minister of Justice Bekir Bozdağ
Milli Müdafaa Caddesi No: 22
Bakanlıklar
06659 Kızılay
Ankara, Turkey
Fax: +90 312 419 33 70
Email: bekir.bozdag@tbmm.gov.trozelkalem@adalet.gov.tr
Twitter: @bybekirbozdag

His Excellency Abdurrahman Bilgiç
43 Belgrave Square
London
SW1X 8PA
Fax: +44 20 73 93 00 66, +44 20 73 93 92 13
Email: embassy.london@mfa.gov.tr

[ecampaign ‘to=bekir.bozdag@tbmm.gov.tr‘ subject=”Pınar Selek”]

Dear Minister

I am writing to you as a supporter of English PEN, the founding centre of the international association of writers, to protest the continuing judicial harassment of sociologist Pınar Selek.

According to PEN’s information, on 3 October 2014 Pınar Selek is due to face trial for the fifth time in 16 years in relation to a 1998 explosion. Selek has been acquitted of all charges three times (in 2006, 2008 and 2011) due to the testimony of expert witnesses, though courts have ordered retrials after each of these acquittals. Her fourth trial resulted in a conviction in January 2013 when Selek was handed an aggravated life sentence, although this conviction was overturned by Turkey’s Supreme Court of Appeals on 11 June 2014 on procedural grounds. Selek has fled Turkey as a result of the judicial harassment against her and now lives abroad.

I share PEN’s concerns that, in the absence of any conclusive or reliable evidence, the trial against Selek contravenes her right to a fair trial as guaranteed under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the European Convention on Human and Democratic Rights, to which Turkey is a state party. I therefore join PEN in calling on the Turkish courts to end Selek’s 16 year ordeal and to acquit her of all charges in the absence of any reliable evidence implicating her in the explosion.

I would welcome your comments on my appeal.

Yours sincerely

[/ecampaign]

Please let us know of any action you take by emailing cat@englishpen.org

About English PEN staff

This content is published by the English PEN staff.

View all posts by English PEN staff →

4 Comments on “Turkey: PEN to observe sociologist Pınar Selek’s hearing”

  1. ‘The ongoing trial of Pınar Selek after sixteen years and three acquittals casts a long shadow over the Turkish justice system.

    While we welcome the court’s decision to lift the arrest warrant and life sentence faced by Pınar Selek it seems absurd that a respected academic and sociologist could be on trial for so long in the absence of any substantial evidence.’

    Read more in this update from colleagues at PEN International and PEN American Center present at Pınar’s hearing http://www.pen-international.org/newsitems/turkey-pen-concerned-by-continuing-judicial-harassment-of-pinar-selek/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *