European Federation of Journalists member stages ‘standing man’ protest

European Federation of Journalists member stages ‘standing man’ protest

European Federation of Journalists member stages ‘standing man’ protest

Köksal stood alone for two hours in front of the EU headquarters. European Federation of Journalists photo

Inspired by the Gezi protester Erdem Gündüz, a European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) member staged a “standing man” demonstration in Brussels on Dec. 1, in protest at the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) case against 46 journalists in Turkey.

Mehmet Köksal stood in silence in front of the European Union headquarters in Brussels for two hours to show support for the 46 journalists currently on trial related to KCK charges, according to a press release said. 

Köksal said it was “easier to stand alone in the cold” than going through the experiences of the journalists on trial over KCK charges. 

The Turkish Journalists’ Union (TGS) also organized a rally on the same day in Istanbul’s Galatasaray Square.

The case of the KCK, the urban wing of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), began in 2011 with a series of arrests, including the arrests of media employees and journalists.

In its statement, the EFJ added that 62 journalists were currently in jail in Turkey, with four already sentenced to life in prison in the early days of the month.

Performance artist Erdem Gündüz touched off a nationwide phenomenon after he stood still for eight hours in Taksim Square on June 17, two days after police violently ejected hundreds of peaceful protesters from Gezi Park. Gündüz inspired hundreds to also stand still in the square, while his demonstration was imitated across the country.