Friday, July 30, 2010

Berivan is Free at Last

July 30, 2010

After almost a month I am back writing my blog with a special update and some good news. The girl Berivan, who was sentenced to over seven years for throwing rocks at Turkish police has been set free due to a softening of terror laws. Since covering the incident in one of my previous blog entries I have been following her plight and was obviously thrilled to hear of release.

I am attaching a New York Times article which does a good job at explaining the changes in the law, covering Berivan’s story, and comments on the tensions in Turkey’s Southeast. The change in the law is indeed a step in the right direction however as Amnesty International has reported it is still not sufficient.

Happily, Berivan is free; her story was crucial in getting the word out and giving a face to the hundreds of children held in Turkish jails. As we see from the last article, tensions in the Southeast remain high and just within days of the introduction of the new measures more children have been arrested following clashes with the Turkish police.



My former blog entry:

New York Times article a (I thank my friend Burak for bringing this article to my attention)

Amnesty International annoucement as covered in the new service Bianet:

Bianet article on new arrest of children:


  1. Thanks for the follow up on Berivan.

    If you can, please write about the Kurdish issue in Turkey?
    What does Jake Hess' deportation signify about Turkey's stance on free speech, Southeastern Human Rights abuses and Kurdish women?

  2. Dear reader,

    I will dedicate more to the Kurdish issue in the fall. You can find a post in Spring 2009 which also discusses it briefly. I found the J. Hess deportation interesting and will look more into this (and ot the issue of women).



  3. "They [the Turks] were, upon the whole, from the black day when they first entered Europe, the one great anti-human specimen of humanity. Wherever they went, a broad line of blood marked the track behind them, and, as far as their dominion reached, civilization disappeared from view. They represented everywhere government by force, as opposed to government by law."

    - William Gladstone

    "There are no crueler and more audacious villains under the heavens than the Turks who spare no age or sex and mercilessly cut down young and old alike and pluck unripe fruit from the wombs of mothers."

    Bishop Fabri of Vienna

    "The [Turkish] barbarian power, which has been for centuries seated in the very heart of the Old World, which has in its brute clutch the most famous countries of classical and religious antiquity and many of the most fruitful and beautiful regions of the earth ... ignorantly holding in its possession one half of the history of the whole world."

    Cardinal Newman

    [The Turks] are tyrants of the women and enemies of the arts.

    "I wish fervently that the Turkish barbarians be chased away immediately out of the country of Xenophon, Socrates, Plato, Sophocles and Euripides. If we wanted, it could be done soon but seven crusades of superstition have been undertaken and a crusade of honor will never take place. We know almost no city built by them; they let decay the most beautiful establishments of Antiquity, they reign over ruins."

    -- Voltaire

    "When I consider history, I find that there has been no nation that has practiced more blasphemy of God, brutally, shameful fornication, and every kind of wild and chaotic living than the Turks."

    -- Philipp Melanchthon