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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Conversation With A State Assassin

TAYAD Families • 20/1/2003

After the Minister for Justice, Cemil Cicek, declared "If the families come to me, I would like to meet them”, on Tuesday January 14, Niyazi Agirman*, member of the association of mutual aid of prisoners’ families (TAYAD) went to the Ministry to lodge a petition.

When he went there, he met Ali Suat Ertosun, the director of the prisons and the penitentiaries. Comment on what was said is superfluous.

Here is the conversation which took place between Ali Suat Ertosun and Niyazi Agirman:

Ertosun: What is your request?

N. Agirman: Abolishing isolation. What I seek is the possibility of placing a certain number of prisoners in a common space.

Ertosun: No, it is not a question of isolation (in the prisons).

N. Agirman: Yes, there is isolation. Since the F-Type prisons came into being, there has been isolation in the prisons. People are confined in individual cells or in three-person cells.

Ertosun: It is not isolation. Moreover, they are not cells but rooms.

N. Agirman: According to you, then, what is a cell?

Ertosun: A cell is a place which does not have a courtyard and which has lighting in the ceiling. On the other hand, in the F-Type prisons, the prisoners play ball, make objects out of earthenware or pottery. Your brother has only to leave to be able to profit from it too.

N. Agirman: Isn’t this reserved for those who accept the "treatment" (ie. abandon their political beliefs, a condition of using such facilities)? You speak as if everyone could leave and profit from it.

Ertosun: One cannot go back to the old system. There, one did not even manage to carry out roll calls. We could not even get into our dormitories. Now, everything is relaxed. All is as we wanted it.

N. Agirman: Why did my son die then? He wanted just to hear some voices. He said: "Ah, if I could hear a human voice, the world would be with me".

Ertosun: They are terrorists.

N. Agirman: No, They are children of the people. Not terrorists.

Ertosun: We have to agree about this. They are terrorists. Political prisoners are people who write columns in newspapers.

N. Agirman: No. Neither my son nor my brother are terrorists. They are political prisoners.

Ertosun: We eradicated them. We will never allow them to be organised.

N. Agirman: This is why you killed 28 people during the operation of December 19.

Ertosun: It had to be done. It was necessary to eradicate the organisations.

N. Agirman: You were on a mission during the operation. In the prison of Bayrampasa, you burned six women alive.

Ertosun: They had to be burned.

N. Agirman: Who killed my son? Then the assassin of my son is you.

Ertosun: Yes, I am an assassin. It is I who killed your son. Have you anything else to say? Go away...

N. Agirman: I do not have anything to say to the assassin of my son.

Then Niyazi Agirman leaves the office, slamming the door.

What you have just read is what an assassin revealed to a father. You could note the spirit which animates those who are in charge of the prisons. If the director of the prisons has such a mentality, you can imagine what the prison guards in the F-Type prisons are like.

* Last year, Volkan, the son of Niyazi Agirman, hung himself in his cell after suffering from depression due to isolation in an F-Type prison cell.

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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the dangers of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of 'crackpot' than the stigma of conformity. And on issues that seem important to you, stand up and be counted at any cost.
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Index: Current Articles

26 January 2003


Other Articles From This Issue:


Sinn Féin's International Perspective: From Conservative to Radical in the Blink of an Eye
Deaglán Ó Donghaile


Northern Ireland's Political Goodwill Games
Paul A. Fitzsimmons


New Year's Greetings

Jimmy Sands


Why Ireland is Unfree; Continued
Chris Fogarty


Youth Against the Dictatorship of the Clerics
Anthony McIntyre


West Belfast Anti-War Meeting - Belfast March
Davy Carlin


Conversation with a State Assassin



23 January 2003


Answers Needed Now
Francie Perry


Where are the courts of Human Rights?
Victor Barker


Principle, Pragmatism and Lies

Ed Moloney


Historical Unconsciousness
Seoirse McLaughlin


Fallen Anglicans and Other Limping Analogies
Eoghan O'Suilleabhain


A Message from the Heart of the Empire
Michael Youlton




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