Jailed MP Berberoğlu cuts all communication with all visitors in protest

Jailed MP Berberoğlu cuts all communication with all visitors in protest

ANKARA
Jailed MP Berberoğlu cuts all communication with all visitors in protest

Jailed lawmaker Enis Berberoğlu said he would cut all communication with his family, lawyers, and fellow lawmakers in a declaration he made via his lawyers on July 22, protesting the Court of Cassation’s July 20 rejection of a demand to stop legal proceedings against him.

“Here is my independent decision,” his statement began.

“I have thoroughly pondered what my reaction would be against the Court of Cassation’s trampling of my constitutional right. I have come to the decision to stop using my free visitation rights with my family, my lawyers, and the lawmakers,” Berberoğlu said.

“I have decided not to use my right to defense before the court and cut all external communication [outside of the prison]. This tough decision will surely not please my family, my lawyers, my party and my loves ones. Thus, [the decision] is independent from them and even in spite of them,” said the lawmaker.

Enis Berberoğlu, The Lawmaker Whose Constitution Was Stolen From Him,” he signed the statement.

Berberoğlu was re-elected in the June 24 snap elections as an MP from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP).

The demand on July 20 was filed by his lawyers who said the lawmaker was once again granted immunity from prosecution with the last election, and such a situation would stop the continuation of proceedings against him. The lawyers argued that the proceedings against the deputy should be suspended until he is once again stripped of his parliamentary immunity.

The lawyers have also demanded Berberoğlu’s release, which the court said they would handle later on.

In February, an Istanbul court sentenced Berberoğlu to five years and 10 months in jail after convicting him of disclosing government secrets.

Berberoğlu was initially sentenced to 25 years in prison in 2017 for espionage over charges he gave daily Cumhuriyet a video purporting to show Turkey’s intelligence agency trucking weapons into Syria.

In a retrial that finished on Feb. 13 of this year, Berberoğlu, who has denied the charges, was sentenced to five years and 10 months in jail.

Enis Berberoğlu, Court of Cassations, protest, constitutional right