Intellectuals propose concrete reforms as response to Gezi protests in appeal to government
Acclaimed writer and columnist Oya Baydar was among the signatories.A group of academics, journalists, artists and activists have published a statement in which they urged the government to undertake reforms as a response to the Gezi Park protests, proposing concrete steps in a wide range of areas.
While slamming the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) repressive attitude against the wave of protests sparked by the demolition attempt of Istanbul's Gezi Park in late May, the group said a "democratic package" enhancing individual freedoms and equality was needed. in a petition published July 11.
The adoption of a law that guarantees the freedom of assembly, the recognition of the education in mother tongues, the transition into a more decentralized state, the recognition of the demands of the LGBT community, the protection of Alevis’ religious rights and a revision of the government's development policy, are among the propositions made in the statement.
"The concrete steps that we have enumerated above should be perceived as a call to conscience and justice to all political actors and citizens," the statement read.
Intellectuals with very different political backgrounds signed the appeal, including journalists Hasan Cemal, Cengiz Çandar, Rober Koptaş, academics Murat Belge, Herkül Millas, Dilek Kurban, writer Oya Baydar, actress Hale Soygazi and LGBT activists Mehmet Tarhan and Esmeray.