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Turkish students' detentions in protests draw criticismISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News | 10/6/2011 12:00:00 AM |
An NGO report reveals that 500 students are currently under arrest in Turkey, with 89 under arrest in Istanbul. Many students have been arrested for demanding free education during protests, the report says
University students have the democratic right to demand a free education but are being silenced by a politicized judiciary that has invoked anti-terror laws against them, the Progressive Lawyers Association (ÇHD) said yesterday in a press statement, adding that some 500 students are currently under arrest in Turkey, with 87 students under arrest in Istanbul alone.
“Students’ demands [pertaining to] free education, tuition fees [and] mass education are also included within the scope of the freedom of expression,” said lawyer Güçlü Sevimli, the ÇHD’s Istanbul branch secretary.
Many students have been arrested for demanding free education during demonstrations, according to the report.
“Due to the fact that the state has not been able to obtain any results regarding students who wage a struggle seeking their rights through the 2911th law [which provides the right to] assemble and demonstrate, the Turkish Penal Code’s articles that regulate organized crime are [being invoked,]” he said.
The legitimacy and the prosecution methods of specially authorized courts have come under question, Sevimli said, adding that trying students in these courts and holding them for prolonged periods of time caused them to lose contact with their schools.
Turkish students face 15 years in prison for demanding free education