KCK trial held in absentia of suspects

KCK trial held in absentia of suspects

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
KCK trial held in absentia of suspects

Suspects, lawyers and journalists leave the courtroom in KCK case. DHA photo

Some 44 members of the media charged with being “press committee members” of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), their lawyers, and journalists left Istanbul’s Silivri 15th High Criminal Court yesterday, upon the court’s refusal to hear one of the suspects speak about the ongoing hunger strikes.
During this fourth hearing of the case, the court board allowed suspects to give their address information in Kurdish upon request, unlike in previous cases. However, the request of one suspect, Kenan Kırkaya, to speak about Kurdish inmates’ hunger strikes was refused by the court board, who said: “This is a political issue.”

Kırkaya intended to give a speech on Kurdish inmates’ hunger strikes as all the suspects in the case also joined the strikes as of Nov. 5. The court board rejected his demand and instead had two successive 15-minute breaks. The court board also ordered the suspects to empty the courtroom. In response, lawyers decided to protest the court board when the gendarmerie forced them to leave the room. Ercan Kanar immediately took the floor representing the group of lawyers, after the court board’s return to the room.

“All the suspects in this case are staging hunger strikes to attain one of their fundamental rights, a defense in the mother tongue, and you cannot tolerate lending an ear to them for a while,” Kanar said.
He also criticized the gendarmerie’s presence in the courtroom and their use of force against lawyers. “The authority of justice cannot be served by the use of force,” he said.