First Arrested Academics for Peace Acquitted

Yazar / Referans: 
Tansu Pişkin, Bianet

Arrested pending trial for a while for having signed the peace declaration, academics Esra Mungan, Meral Camcı, Muzaffer Kaya and Kıvanç Ersoy have been acquitted. “We have won what is ours”, Camcı has commented.

Arrested pending trial for some time for having signed the declaration entitled "We will not be a party to this crime" prepared by Academic for Peace, academics Asst. Prof. Esra Mungan, Asst. Prof. Meral Camcı, Asst. Prof. Muzaffer Kaya and Assoc. Prof. Kıvanç Ersoy have been acquitted of the offense charged between court sessions.

The latest hearing of the case was held on May 23. In that hearing, the attorney of Camcı and Mungan presented an excuse and the hearing was adjourned to October 15 so that the rogatory procedures initiated for the statements as to the accusations of Kaya and Ersoy would be awaited.

The court has ruled that academics Mungan, Camcı, Kaya and Ersoy shall be acquitted, referring to the verdict of the Constitutional Court, which has concluded that the prosecution and penalization of Academics for Peace have violated their freedom of expression.

Camcı: We have won what is ours

Sharing the verdict of acquittal on her Twitter account, Meral Camcı has said,

"ACQUITTAL. It has been 3.5 years since we said, 'Release is not enough, but acquittal!' Acquittal as of today...

"We ourselves have won what belongs to us. They did not give it, we have won what is ours. The honor and joy of struggling shoulder to shoulder and not obeying to the unjust and unlawful rest with us".

What happened?

On January 10, 2016, 1,128 academics published a declaration entitled "We will not be party to this crime" on behalf of the Academics for Peace initiative. With the participation of further academics, the number of academics who have signed the declaration has reached 2,212.

Making the statements at the meeting, academics Asst. Prof. Esra Mungan, Asst. Prof. Muzaffer Kaya, Assoc. Prof. Kıvanç Ersoy (March 15, 2019) and Asst. Prof. Meral Camcı (March 31, 2019) were arrested on charge of "propagandizing for a terrorist organizations" as per the Article 7/2 of the Anti-Terror Law (TMK). The academics were released on April 22, 2016.

Upon the request of the prosecutor, the Ministry of Justice permitted that the academics be prosecuted on charge of "degrading the Turkish Nation, the State of the Republic of Turkey and State bodies and institutions" as per the Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code. However, the trial was continuing as per the Article 7/2 of the TMK. (TP/SD)