Judge says publishing freedom pioneer must remain in detention

first_img RSF_en Reporters Without Borders condemns an Istanbul judge’s decision on 1 November to keepcolumnist and publisher Ragip Zarakolu in detention until a prosecutor has drawn up anindictment, which in Turkey could take months or even years. Arrested alongwith dozens of other activists under Turkey’s anti-terrorism laws on 28 October (see below),Zarakolu was immediately transferred from police custody to Istanbul’s Metris prison.“It seems the Turkish judicial system has decided to make Zarakolu pay for being a free speechactivist,” Reporters Without Borders said. “A journalist of international renown and respectedhuman rights defender, it is now his turn to be a victim of the two of the judicial system’s failings– misuse of terrorism charges to stifle criticism and misuse of the provisions for pre-trial detention.”The press freedom organization added: “Keeping a media figure of this importance in detention,although he is in very poor health,” sends a very bad signal to the media. We demand hisimmediate release.”Zarakolu runs the Belge publishing house, writes columns for the daily Günlük Evrensel andchairs the freedom to publish committee of the Turkish Publishers Union (TYB). As with manyother journalists who are currently detained, it is absurd think he might “destroy evidence, putpressure on witnesses or take flight” – the grounds for ordering pre-trial detention under Turkishlaw.Zarakolu was one of around 90 people who were picked up last week in a vast operationtargeting presumed “collaborators” of the Union of Kurdistan Communities (KCK), a networkaffiliated to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).At prosecutor Adnan Cimen’s request, 47 of them were transferred to prison when thelegally-permitted period of police custody expired. As well as Zarakolu, they included SongülKaratagna, who writes for Özgür Gündem, a pro-Kurdish newspaper that Zarakolu used to edit.Hundreds of people – among them the widow of the murdered journalist Hrant Dink andrepresentatives of several political parties including the BDP, which is pro-Kurd, and the CHP,which is Kemalist (Turkish nationalist and secularist) – protested against the arrests outsidethe law courts in the Istanbul district of Besiktas on 31 October, waving placards saying “That’senough!”Even the leading conservative journalist Fehmi Koru criticized the latest developments in the KCKinvestigation when he appeared on Kanal 7 TV on the evening of 31 October. Many Turkish andinternational media organizations have voiced support for Zarakolu, who won the internationalPublishers Association’s freedom to publish prize in 2008 and the prize of the Turkish JournalistsAssociation (TGC) in 2007.—-31.10.2011 Columnist and publisher arrested in round-up of pro-Kurdish activistsReporters Without Borders strongly condemns columnist and publisher Ragip Zarakolu’s detention since the evening of 28 October, when he and around 40 other people were arrested in a round-up of pro-Kurdish activists in Istanbul. “Turkey’s anti-terrorist law is yet again being abused in an attempt to silence those who speak out about the sensitive issue of minorities,” Reporters Without Borders said, calling for his immediate release. Zarakolu writes for the left-wing daily Günlük Evrensel and heads the Editions Belge publishing house in Istanbul.The arrests were carried out as part of an investigation into the Union of Kurdistan Communities (KCK), a group affiliated to the banned Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).No official reason has so far been given for Zarakolu’s arrest. His lawyer, Özcan Kiliç, said he was questioned about several articles he wrote for the pro-Kurdish magazine Özgur Gündem, in which he referred to trips abroad since 2001, and about his participation in the inauguration of the Istanbul Political Academy, which was searched on 28 October.He appeared today before a prosecutor in Istanbul.Last March he was convicted of terrorist propaganda for publishing a book by the author Mehmet Güler entitled “The global state and the stateless Kurds”. He appealed against the conviction and the case is currently before Turkey’s highest court of appeal. News April 2, 2021 Find out more Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor Organisation —–02.08.2010 – Another trial against Kurdish minority publicationReporters Without Borders condemns the department of public prosecution’s decision to bring a new prosecution against writer Mehmet Güler and publisher Ragip Zarakolu. This time they are to be prosecuted for a book about the political system that the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) would like to introduce.In a trial due to begin on 30 September before an Istanbul assizes court, Güler and Zarakolu are facing at least eight months in prison if convicted on charges of “publishing PKK statements” and “PKK propaganda.” The PKK has been waging an armed struggle for Kurdish independence since 1984 and is on a government list of terrorist organisations.Published by Editions Belges and entitled “The KCK File: Global State and Kurds without a State”, the book was immediately confiscated and banned when it was made available at a book fair in the southeastern city of Diyarbakir in May. “KCK” are the initials of the “democratic confederalism” that the PKK proposes for Turkey.Prosecutor Hakan Karaali is bringing his case under articles 6 and 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Law, which has been used to prosecute many Kurdish journalists and news media, and to impose long jail terms.Zarakolu said he published the book in order to satisfy “the right of readers to information” and to present “an alternative version of the facts.” Güler said he “avoided using language that is to anyone’s benefit or detriment.” The author added: “The Kurdish political parties are banned. Former ministers, intellectuals, human rights activists and lawyers are jailed. Citizens have a right to know what is going on. I wrote this book in an entirely objective manner.”Güler and Zarakolu have just been tried before another Istanbul court of assizes in connection with an earlier book, entitled “Decisions harder to take than death.” The court acquitted Zarakolu but sentenced Güler to 15 months in prison on 10 June on a charge of PKK propaganda.Reporters Without Borders is worried about the situation of press freedom and media in Turkey amid mounting judicial harassment of journalists, especially those working for Kurdish media. It particularly concerned about new resolutions regarding TV news broadcasts that the government adopted on 15 July.Interior minister Besir Atalay announced that the Radio and TV Supreme Council had decided, in agreement with national TV station executives, that “certain principles must be followed in situations of terrorist risk and other extraordinary circumstances.” Under these “principles,” TV stations undertake to limit the length and frequency of news flashes.Another resolution, which has all the hallmarks of a veiled warned to the media, stressed that TV executives had a duty to avoid broadcasting “programmes, interviews or statements that appear to justify terrorist actions or are likely to be interpreted as propaganda on behalf of the people responsible for attacks or as encouraging future attacks.”The interior minister hailed “these very decisive positions regarding terrorism” but the Contemporary Association of Journalists has warned that they are “likely to result in abuses.”Reporters Without Borders fears that the vague working of these resolutions will be open to different interpretations and will encourage TV stations to censor themselves. Combined with the Anti-Terrorism Law, they could provide the authorities with new grounds for arbitrary arrests and prosecutions. April 28, 2021 Find out more Help by sharing this information November 3, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Judge says publishing freedom pioneer must remain in detention News Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Follow the news on Turkey to go further News April 2, 2021 Find out more Receive email alerts News Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit TurkeyEurope – Central Asia last_img read more

CHURCH CONFUSION: CofE to consider transgender baptisms

first_imgThe Guardian 21 May 2015The Church of England is to debate plans to introduce a ceremony akin to a baptism to mark the new identities of Christians who undergo gender transition.The Rev Chris Newlands, the vicar of Lancaster Priory, has proposed a motion to the General Synod to debate the issue, after he was approached by a young transgender person seeking to be “re-baptised” in his new identity.The motion, which was passed by Blackburn Diocese last month, calls on the House of Bishops to consider whether it should introduce a new service to mark the milestone in the life of a trans person. A spokesperson for the Archbishops’ Council confirmed that the motion had been received, but said it would not be debated imminently.Newlands urged the church to take the lead on welcoming a group that suffered high levels of discrimination.He said he knew a number of trans people though his work with LGBT organisations. “It’s an absolute trauma to go through this, with the surgery, as people get a lot of transphobic bullying. The church needs to take a lead and be much more proactive to make sure they are given a warm welcome.”The motion had “captured people’s imagination”, he said, and already gathered a large amount of support. It has been passed by the parochial church council, the Deanery Synod and the Blackburn Diocese, which covers Lancashire.http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/may/21/proposal-for-transgender-baptism-to-go-before-church-of-england?utm_source=Christian+Concern&utm_campaign=c51c641cf1-WN-2015-05-23&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_9e164371ca-c51c641cf1-127299873last_img read more

Paramedic and Community Risk Reduction Officer Andy Marceau offers tips for Heatstroke Prevention Awareness Day

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisThe weather is finally changing, which means spending more time outdoors. The state of Michigan designated April 22 Heatstroke Prevention Awareness day, and is encouraging Michiganders to take precautions in hot weather.Paramedic and Risk Reduction Officer, Andy Marceau says one of the biggest causes for heatstroke… being trapped in a hot car.“Children have died in car with temperatures as low as 63 degrees. And basically the car becomes a greenhouse. So a car at 70 degrees on a sunny day in just a half hour can reach 104 degrees. So we hit 70 degrees quite often here in northern Michigan in the summer and in just a half hour, it could be at 104 and much higher than that as time goes on.”Marceau says listening to your body is also a critical part of maintaining your health when participating in *outdoor physical activities.“Any time when you know if you’re going to be participating in a sport or going to go out and start doing some activities, you need to plan ahead. Drink plenty of fluids before you go, but also know your limitations. Know how much you can take or how long before you need to take that break. There’s three heat emergencies. They start off with heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. The third one is the worst. You want to avoid that at all costs. So if you’re out working and you’re sweating, it’s good that you’re sweating, but you need to take breaks and replenish those fluids with water is the best way to replenish those fluids.Symptoms of a heatstroke include difficulty breathing and blurred vision. The most obvious symptom: the body will stop sweating.If your notice these symptoms, contact your doctor, or call 911.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThis Tags: Andy Marceau, awareness, Health, heat, heatstroke, Marceau, officer, paramedic, strokeContinue ReadingPrevious Photo of the Day for Monday, April 22Next Michigan State Police to hold drug take-back daylast_img read more