In this end­less tri­al sur­round­ing the now-pro­hib­it­ed news­pa­per Özgür Gün­dem, the ver­dict con­cern­ing Aslı Erdoğan may be ren­dered on Feb­ru­ary 14, Valen­tine’s Day, as she men­tions iron­i­cal­ly in the let­ter she sent to those who have sup­port­ed her since 2016.

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Kedis­tan was among them, we can thus refer you back to the spe­cial dossier con­tain­ing all the judi­cia­ry twists and turns in this grotesque tri­al and jail­ing of Aslı, as well as the events that followed.

Thus, a few days ago, Aslı Erdoğan launched an appeal. We con­sid­er it impor­tant to respond to it as wide­ly as pos­si­ble and to alert anew those who had mobi­lized for her lib­er­a­tion. This had giv­en rise to pub­li­ca­tions which, we hope, will find their exten­sion in relays of these col­lec­tive sig­na­tures, cre­at­ing a renewed vis­i­bil­i­ty for the author­i­ties in Turkey, show­ing them that the regime’s hostages are not forgotten.

Here is the com­mu­nique of col­lec­tive sup­port and its first sig­na­to­ries, relayed these days by sev­er­al French media:

In Solidarity with Aslı Erdoğan!

We stand by the side of Aslı Erdoğan and of her co-accused jour­nal­ists and human rights defendors pros­e­cut­ed in Turkey, in order to defend their lives, free­dom of expres­sion and demo­c­ra­t­ic rights.

In 2016, on all five con­ti­nents, artists, authors, intel­lec­tu­als, defendors of human rights, asso­ci­a­tions, pub­lish­ers mobi­lized to demand the lib­er­a­tion of nov­el­ist Aslı Erdoğan jailed in Turkey on August 16 for writ­ing four arti­cles in the news­pa­per Özgür Gün­dem. Thanks to the mobi­liza­tion, this great demo­c­ra­t­ic fig­ure in her coun­try was released from jail on Decem­ber 29 2016.

But while she is now in exile, the tri­al against her con­tin­ues and is going through a sud­den accel­er­a­tion. Aslı Erdoğan was ini­tial­ly accused of “attempt at destroy­ing State uni­ty”, “belong­ing to a ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tion” and of “ter­ror­ist pro­pa­gan­da”, accu­sa­tions liable to a sen­tence of life imprisonment.

A months ago, the pros­e­cu­tor dropped the first two accu­sa­tions, main­tain­ing the one of “ter­ror­ist pro­pa­gan­da”. He called for a prison sen­tence of up ro 9 years. With sen­tences of up to 15 years impris­on­ment for the news­pa­per’s edi­tor in chief and Eren Keskin, Pres­i­dent of the Human Rights Association.

It was announced sud­den­ly that the next hear­ing will be held on Feb­ru­ary 14 2020.

As a reminder, the four arti­cles incrim­i­nat­ing Aslı Erdoğan were pub­lished in 2016 in a legal news­pa­per, Özgür Gün­dem, pro­hib­it­ed since but that was not pros­e­cut­ed over them at the time of their pub­li­ca­tion. These same arti­cles have been pub­lished in sev­er­al lan­guages by over twelve pub­lish­ing hous­es and on a num­ber of plat­forms, and have been read in pub­lic read­ings. Are all of us accom­plices of “ter­ror­ist propaganda”?

Turkey has launched a total war against Human Rights, lit­er­a­ture and even worse, against CONSCIENCE” Aslı Erdoğan has just writ­ten us, launch­ing a call to solidarity.

We, the under­signed, call on the con­dem­na­tion of every pos­si­ble form of these direct and unac­cept­able attacks on free­dom of expres­sion and demo­c­ra­t­ic rights.

We call for sol­i­dar­i­ty with Aslı Erdoğan and the co-accused in this tri­al and beyond, with all the coura­geous women par­tic­u­lar­ly threat­ened these days, along with all those in Turkey who con­tin­ue express­ing them­selves at the risk of los­ing their freedom.

This appeal is launched at the ini­tia­tive of the Alliance des Femmes pour la Démoc­ra­tie (Wom­en’s Alliance for Democ­ra­cy) the pub­lish­ing house Édi­tions des femmes-Antoinette Fouque and the edi­tors of Kedis­tan.

You can sign the petition by clicking here.

First sig­na­to­ries:

Actu­aLit­té (la rédac­tion), Lau­re Adler (jour­nal­iste), Joseph Andras (écrivain), Igor Babou (uni­ver­si­taire), Ella Bal­aert (écrivaine), Sophie Bas­souls (pho­tographe), Anne Emmanuelle Berg­er (uni­ver­si­taire), Gérard Biard (jour­nal­iste), Dominique Blanc (comé­di­enne), Joyce Blau (Pro­fesseur émérite), Izabel­la Borges (uni­ver­si­taire, tra­duc­trice), Paule du Bouchet (écrivaine, éditrice), Sophie Bourel (comé­di­enne), Sonia Bressler (philosophe, prési­dente de l’AFFDU), Car­men Castil­lo (cinéaste), Chan­tal Chawaf (écrivaine), Hélène Cixous (écrivaine), Eti­enne Copeaux (his­to­rien), Marie Dar­rieussecq (écrivaine), Zehra Doğan (artiste, écrivaine), Ali­cia Dujovne Ortiz (écrivaine), Annie Ernaux (écrivaine), mou­ve­ment FEMEN, Dominique Grange (chanteuse engagée), Sterenn Guir­riec (comé­di­enne, met­teuse en scène), Bülent Gündüz (cinéaste), H/F Île de France, Hijos Paris, Francesca Isidori (jour­nal­iste, direc­trice artis­tique), Sylvie Jan (France-Kur­dis­tan), Emmanuel Las­coux (hel­léniste), Philippe Le Duc (artiste scéno­graphe), Joëlle Le Marec (uni­ver­si­taire), Nathalie Léger-Cres­son (écrivaine), Lio (chanteuse, actrice), Cather­ine Malard (le dire et l’écrire), Car­ole Mann (soci­o­logue, Women in war), Valérie Man­teau (écrivaine), Claire Mauss-Copeaux (his­to­ri­enne), Mengue M’Eyaà (prési­dente Mou­ve­ment civique des femmes du Gabon), Jacque­line Merville (écrivaine, artiste), Daniel Mes­guich (acteur, met­teur en scène), Ümit Metin (l’ACORT), Anna Mouglalis (actrice), Kendal Nezan (Prési­dent de l’In­sti­tut kurde de Paris), Cécile Oumhani (écrivaine), Denis Péan de Lo’jo (musi­cien), PEN club français, Emmanuel Pier­rat (avo­cat, écrivain), Titi Robin (musi­cien), Agnès Rosen­stiehl (écrivaine, illus­tra­trice), Tony Rublon (ami­tiés kur­des de Bre­tagne), Fabi­enne Ser­van Schreiber (pro­duc­trice de films), Tar­di (auteur, dessi­na­teur), Mari­na Vla­dy (actrice), Cather­ine Wein­za­epflen (écrivaine), Lau­rence Zor­dan (philosophe, écrivaine).

Translation by Renée Lucie Bourges
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Le petit mag­a­zine qui ne se laisse pas caress­er dans le sens du poil.