On July 15, those who seek for the power to create the political change not in the struggle of the people, but in military power and military coup d’état created a setting of violence, leaving wounded people behind. We wish a swift recovery for all those injured. We would like to express that we share the sorrow of those who lost their beloved ones.
As The Peoples’ Democratic Party Women’s Parliamentary Group, we feel the need to make a statement, because we know that so many women share the same feelings, in those days of anxiety and questions since the night of July 15.
Some of us, especially those who have witnessed the military coup on September 12th were personal witnesses of how a military junta causes unhealable wounds in women’s life. Those among us who has experienced military prisons in those coup years, know words like “welcome tortures,” “cages,” “coffin holders,” sexual harassment, and they live with bitter memories unknown to others.
For us, military coup means dark days, which we still cannot face what women have gone through.
Days of great pain, when more than a million were tagged, dozens were executed, hundreds were tortured to death, women were exposed to severe tortures, while mothers and women in great pain waiting for their children or relatives outside taught Turkey the struggle for human rights.
We, democratic and antimilitarist women always struggled to prevent future tortures like the ones inflicted in Gayrettepe torture-house, Mamak and Diyarbakir prisons. We know that no military coup or government which does not represent the people’s will can enlighten the future of women.
We would like to emphasize that the authoritative and particularistic government crisis which we have identified as a “civil coup” for months, the execution of war in Kurdish towns has laid the foundation for the attempted coup today.
As long as there is was, there is always a danger of a coup in Turkey. The antidote for this danger is not more authoritarianism, on the contrary, the antidote is making way for democracy and freedom for all.
However, incidents we have witnessed on the streets after July 15 were far from creating a hope for democracy for us, women. Since July 15 men are on the street, men are in uniforms, men were in politics. Their methods were male. Their struggle was not for democracy, but for power. Dominantly male groups causing an increase of violene, provoked to commit offenses, caused concerns in Alevi communities, Syrian refugees residing in Turkey and women, who have gone through a history of massacres.
We have witnessed polices calling coup-suspected soldiers as “infidels” and their wives as “spoil of war,” and threatening soldiers arrested due to coup accusations with abusing their daughters! The language and methods used are the same with those used by soldiers sexually abusing the women during 1980 coup d’etat; “Esedullah Forces,” special operation teams, soldiers and the police sharing naked dead bodies of women killed in Kurdish cities, tearing the women clothing and underwear in bedrooms, writing sexist slogans on the walls, and operating as the Turkish branch of ISIS.
The way to prevent future coups is through defeating this male-dominated and militarist mentality using every possibility of power!
It should be noted that; no woman has obeyed and will obey to the oral or physical violence of those conducting the war and coups over women in their way!
It is too soon to say that we’re safe from these coups. Certain steps should be taken in order to prevent the social boil and damages caused by the coup itself. Upon the attempted coup, it is required to recover the confidence shaken by the instant arrest of thousands of judges, prosecutors and government officials; to establish the expectation that a lawful and fair judgement shall be made for the suspects; to eliminate the pressure on press, and to assure women, all peoples and sectors that this is also their country.
Ensuring regain of the actual role of the jurisdiction that lost its independency and objectivity is the only method is to stop the human right violence detected several times by international authorities; to face with what’s happened; to take a new step towards peace; and prevent possible coups.
High-ranking officers taken under custody upon the attempted coup include people who involved in mass violation of rights against Kurdish people. Judgment of these people for their war crimes committed should be ensured in order to ensure social peace. And as we all know, time-out is out of question for crimes committed against the humanity! Specifically, crimes committed by coup-suspected generals and special units under their rule should be revealed and investigated.
And that execution and individual arming are brought forward against the claim that the antidote of a coup is democracy is the continuation of the putschist mentality which never accords with democracy. Politics cannot be done over revenge! And individual arms mostly shoot women.
Streets have meaning when they are filled with thousands of colorful women with different thoughts, styles and diversities.
We, as women, shall continue to fight against coups and all restrictions, violations of human rights, male dominance and militarism on the streets. We hope to open our eyes to days when each fight for human rights, democracy and equality is equivalent to each other, and the requirement of democracy is adopted.
No one of us should lose our hearts; as women, we shall reorganize a collective fight against coups and all pressures. We shall raise our voice together.
Parliament Women Commission
July 20, 2016