Deniz Çil reports: A project for a natural gas harbor and Floating Storage Regasification Unit (FSRU) is threatening the Aegean Gulf of Saros, known for its natural beauty. While locals continue a legal battle against construction, Turkey's Petroleum Pipeline Corporation (BOTAŞ) has signed a tender for the project with an anonymous partner.
A group of locals and environmental activists protested kitchenware manufacturer Güral Porselen for continuing construction on a wind energy plant in the area that protesters had successfully appealed in 2016. The company went into a local village with heavy machinery and cut down trees despite the cancellation of the project, locals said.
Pro-government Cengiz Holding's purchase of copper mines in western Turkey's Kaz Mountains is threatening to wipe out three villages in the area. Mining in the mountains has been widely protested for over a year, resulting in a mere pause in activities that have already caused major deforestation.
Police blocked a protest by the Confederation of Public Employees Trade Union (KESK) slamming comments by the country's top religious figure. Diyanet head Ali Erbaş have been the source of controversy nationwide, as he "damned" the country's founding father Atatürk during his sermon at the first mass prayer held at Hagia Sophia.
A former district governor who got removed from his post for insulting a local was promoted to deputy governor of Bilecik. The local that the former district governor insulted was protesting the expropriation of their land.
Police have formed barricades around bar association heads who staged a sit-in at the central Kuğulu Park in the capital Ankara in protest of a government bill allowing for the formation of multiple bar associations in each province. Lawyers who came to the area in support of the bar association heads slammed the police's action saying the park cannot be closed off to the public.
Footage of the detentions of five individuals detained at pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) press conference in Istanbul reveal shouts from the civilians begging the police to stop pressing on their backs and telling them that their chest hurts. The images of police pressing on the detainee's backs is reminiscent of the recent police killing of black Minneapolis resident George Floyd, remembered with his words "I can't breathe!"
Police detained some 15 people at an Ankara protest condemning the police killing of black Minneapolis resident George Floyd. The protesters chanted some of Floyd's last words as he was suffocated to death by the officer, "Please, I can't breathe!"
A group of seniors in Istanbul's Cihangir neighborhood protested the ongoing curfew on their age group. On a Sunday when they were allowed outside, the seniors asked the curfew to be lifted on citizens over 65 who have dutifully stayed home for months to avoid spreading COVID-19.
Locals in a village of Western Turkey last week were detained by the Gendarmerie during a protest against a mining company that is deforesting the area. The Gendarmerie subsequently established a blockade around the village to prevent locals from leaving it.
Turkey’s Constitutional Court has found rights violation in the case of three protesters beaten by police during an anti-government protest in the wake of Reyhanlı car bombings in 2013. The court fined the state to pay 12,500 liras ($1,790) to the complainants as compensation and demanded that the prosecutors launch a new lawsuit to determine the identities of the police officers responsible for the violence.
A group of 25 students pressed charges against police officers who beat them up whilst disbanding a protest on March 4 against Turkey's loans and dormitories authority. The students said all student housing and food expenses should be free.
A group of Turkish Circassians staged a protest in condemnation of recent remarks made by Russia's Turkey Ambassador Alexei Erkhov, the latter of whom referred to the 1864 Circassian Genocide as a “wonderful myth”. Members of the Caucasus Federations Association (KAFFAS) assembled at an Ankara park after a meeting with Erkhov failed to result in the apology that they were anticipating.
A report based on United Nations data from Turkey's 2020 Universal Periodic Review revealed that some 147 bans on demonstrations and protests have been implemented in 22 different locations across Turkey between Jan. 1, 2019 and Jan. 31, 2020. "In Turkey, the constitutional right to 'peaceful assembly and demonstration with no prior notice' has become a meaningless expression," said the report by the Turkey Human Rights Foundation (TIHV).
Nine students who were arrested for performing the Chilean feminist dance Las Tesis are suffering from financial consequences. Aylin Şahin's student loan payments were discontinued because of the investigation against her, and Leyla Mavili was kicked out of her dormitory after police notified the administration of her arrest.