Pınar Selek is a sociologist, feminist, anti-militarist, and author. She has been studying, publishing, and working on the rights of the oppressed and vulnerable communities such as homeless children, sex workers, sexual minorities and in particular, transgender people, Romani people, and the Kurds. Several books by Selek have been published in Turkish, German, and French. She is also one of the founding editors of the Turkish feminist journal Amargi. Selek has been prosecuted for over 15 years in Turkey in connection to an explosion in the Spice Bazaar, Istanbul on July 9, 1998, which killed 7 people and injured more than 120. Tried and acquitted of all charges on three occasions (in 2006, 2008, and 2011), her most recent acquittal was amended in November 2012 by the Istanbul High Criminal Court Twelfth Chamber, which, with no new evidence, sentenced her to aggravated life imprisonment on January 24, 2013. Her lawyers have appealed the verdict and declared plans to bring her case before the European Court of Human Rights. Selek currently lives in Strasbourg, France and is pursuing her doctoral thesis at Strasbourg University.
For more information, please see http://www.pinarselek.com/public/page.aspx?id=241
Those Who Seek Freedom Are Punished: The Case of Pınar Selek
The headline “Red notice issued for Pınar Selek” circulated on news sites on August 27, 2013. A close reading of the news reveals that the Istanbul High Criminal Court Chamber 12 has applied to the Ministry of Justice for a red notice request for Pınar Selek in spite of the annotation put by the chief justice.
The horror continues… Sociologist Pınar Selek is still being punished for asking the questions nobody dared to ask during the 90’s when there was no movement towards peace. As our country’s agenda was being determined by those who chose wars and death, one sociologist stood against guns with her questions and pointed to the other side where non-violence exists. Selek is still being targeted for this stance. Selek has been purposefully selected and subjected to a harsh judicial treatment because of her works on Kurds.
Selek showed that a state of war exists, not only during armed conflict, but also in all kinds of relations that produce violence, which have permeated our everyday lives and society. She is morally opposed to all kind of wars, does not adhere to the simple dichotomies of right and wrong, and shoulders the responsibility of a feasible solution. The case of Pınar Selek is an intimidation tactic to prevent and punish all those who seek justice and freedom.
The trial process continues for Pınar Selek. The district court has sentenced her to aggravated life imprisonment even though the chief justice has put an annotation on the case. Her lawyers have filed an appeal to the Supreme Court and are awaiting a date.
We, the LGBTI people, will be in Ankara for the trial. We call on all to follow the case of Pınar Selek for peace, for humanity, for justice and for freedom.
Marmara Üniversitesi LGBT MadiMar
Yeditepe Gender Studies and Student Organization Against Discrimination