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Arrests in London of Turkish Hunger Strike supporters

Gurkan Gurr and Rory O'Driscoll plus four other activists for the Turkish Socialist and Death Fast causes have just been charged in London under the Terrorism Act. All six, four men and two women, have been charged with Membership of a proscribed organisation and controlling property or assets of a proscribed group.

PATA and TAYAD, Scotland

Police made 7 arrests at approximately 07:00 this morning (11.12.02 ). The London Information Bureau of the DHKC (Turkish Peoples' Revolutionary Front) was raided at 05:30, and 2 arrests were made there. It is unknown where the other arrests occurred but it is likely that people were picked up at their home addresses.

The majority of the detainees are being represented by specialist firms of solicitors who can deal with the anti-democratic provisions of the Terrorism Act. However, at least one of the detainees had his fingerprints, photograph and DNA taken prior to seeing a solicitor, being interrogated or charged with any offence.

One of the detainees has been arrested on suspicion of offences under sections 11, 12 and 15 of the Terrorism Act 2000, i.e., membership of a proscribed (illegal) organisation, support of a proscribed organisation and raising finances for the purposes of terrorism. It is unclear what the other six have been arrested for.

PATA calls on all supporters and progressive people to call Paddington Green police station on 020 7321 8550, and request to speak to the custody sergeant and/or the duty inspector. Please say that you are a concerned citizen and wish to enquire after the welfare of the detainees, and express your desire that they are treated well.

Let the police know that the public will not stand by while people are criminalised under these repressive and unnecessary laws, and that the public are monitoring the progress of the investigation. The police can hold these detainees for up to 48 hours before they need a warrant of further detention (which gives them till approximately 07:00 on Friday 13th), BUT people are only supposed to be detained for as long as is NECESSARY.

PATA demands the release of all political prisoners, including those held under the Terrorism Act 2000 and those interned under the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act!

PATA demands the repeal of these unjust laws, and an end to the racist and divisive legislation, policies, and rhetoric from the British state!

People Against the Terrorism Act,
18:20, 11.12.02

In the early hours of Wednesday 11 December, 7 people were dragged from their homes, arrested and detained under this government's most repressive piece of legislation, the Terrorism Act 2000. Dawn raids were also made on the office of the exile Turkish socialist DHKC Information Bureau. 6 of those men and women have now been charged with offences under the Terrorism Act (membership of an organisation which is banned by the Terrorism Act) and are still being held NOW at Paddington Green police station.

The only "crime" of those who have been arrested and charged this week was to oppose the Turkish Government's well documented role in the imprisonment and torture of thousands of political dissenters and to organise support for Turkish political prisoners who are staging a hunger strike in protest at their torture - a hunger strike, which has been kept hidden by the British media and which so far has cost 100 lives.

These are ordinary men and women from our communities. Brave men and women who are prepared to speak out and let the world know about crimes the Turkish government is perpetrating against their family and friends in Turkey.

The Terrorism Act 2000 effectively allows for people to be dragged from their homes and detained without trial at the will of the state for what amounts to little more than "Thought-Crime", expressing support for beliefs and causes that the NATO imperialist oligarchy deem to be "terrorist".

This is part and parcel of an offensive by the military/state wing of big business to smash any opposition to the US and Britain's plans for a New World Order - hegemony with no opposition.

The staggering hypocrisy of leaders such as Blair and Bush is disgusting, these war criminals who have personally authorised the mass murder of thousands in countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq and Yugoslavia, who through their economic policies condemn millions to starvation and poverty and who are at this moment plotting another genocidal war against the people of Iraq, a people who have already suffered the deaths of 500,000 of their children at the behest of the imperialist war-criminals in Downing St and the White House.

These are governments who are not only silent at the war being waged by fascist Israel against the Palestinian people, but who supply the very weapons and funds required to wage that war.

At the same time as these comrades were being arrested and detained, Blair was pushing for Turkey, a state that has murdered tens of thousands of it's Kurdish minority, the very people who Blair claims to be so concerned about in Iraq, to be given acceptance into the hallowed ranks of the European Union. Concerns about Turkey's appalling human rights record are now of little concern when Blair himself is keen to copy their methods and further consolidate the use of Turkey as a forward base for the NATO war of expansion and subjugation into Asia and the Middle-East.

And yet they have the audacity to call our comrades "Terrorists"!

"First they came for the Irish, but I did not speak out because I am not Irish. Then they came for the Islamists, but I did not speak out because I am not Muslim. Then they came for me."

When is it time to speak?

TAYAD, Scotland




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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.
- Hamilton Wright Mabie

Index: Current Articles

15 December 2002


Other Articles From This Issue:


Arrests in London of Turkish Hunger Strike supporters


The Beast is Back
Henry McDonald


Christmas in the "Holy Land"
Margaret Quinn


The Theocractic Threat to Secular Freedom

Anthony McIntyre


13 December 2002


Giving Political Leadership
Liam O Ruairc


The Truth About Turkey
Mags Glennon


Belfast Socialists, Capitalism and War
Davy Carlin


Don't Join the RUC/PSNI

Sean Matthews


The Untouchables
Anthony McIntyre


Chaos Theory: Stickies and Stones Break Bones
Eamon Lynch




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