Call from Urban Movements Istanbul / HIC-Habitat International Coalition


To the World Public and the World Press:

A government who seems totally
unaware of the concept of
conscience and who definitely lacks any proper perception of humanity has been putting
on an act of utmost violence in almost all parts of the city since last night. This
dark page has unfortunately thus been added to the already known and very much
debated human rights record of Turkey. History will certainly not forgive this
government; this government with its brutal police, its incompetent governors,
its dishonest media and its false jurisdiction! Cruelty beyond comprehension
for even war time situations is being systematically applied. While the
government has been openly overruling all norms of human rights in front of the
whole world, its spokespeople and the governor of Istanbul have chosen to
address the national and international public in a reckless manner, creating
stories about “marginal groups” and “vandalism”.

Never before have dignity and
pride been so brutally vandalized!

Last night, “robocops”
programmed to kill without making a distinction between women, children, old
people and the sick have attacked the peaceful crowd which had festively
gathered all day long at the Gezi Park. Gas bombs have been thrown at hospitals
and at houses in which helpless people took refuge. The wounded who were
brought into the makeshift infirmary at the nearby Divan Hotel have been
re-bombed countless times. Rubber bullets and water cannons have been used in
addition to the gas bombs and as the water sprayed by the cannons contained an
unknown chemical substance of acidic nature, many people with rashes and
itches, skin allergies and open skin lesions have been observed among the
wounded. To this moment, the exact composition of the water spray has remained
unknown. In short, last night in Istanbul, savageness unequaled even by the
atrocities of a war time environment has become the ruler.

We would now like to ask: If
this is not vandalism, what is?

We would also like to ask the
sovereigns whose mode of ruling comprises of polarizing people, increasing all tensions
and forcing everybody to limits; is this what you call “peace”? Can peace only
be attained by carrying out whatever the government orders? What kind of a government
do you call yourselves if your answer to these questions is “yes”?
Is this your understanding of democracy?

This is our call to all the
governing and/or opposing members of the parliament who have now become a part
of this brutality by remaining silent, to the segment of media that has
accepted the language of this cruelty as its own mode of expression and to the
members of the police force who, openly violating all rules of human rights,
have turned into barbarian “robocops” which think they will not have to account
or stand trial for their actions: In the name of humanity, first listen to the
voice of your conscience!

We would also like to address
the world public and in particular all the international human rights
mechanisms Turkey is also a part of with this message and ask them to help us
in making our voices heard in our protest of this government which has adapted
cruelty and savageness as a mode of approach towards its people. Please hear
our voice and take the necessary steps to stop these atrocities!

Cihan Uzunçarşılıoğlu Baysal

Spokesperson of URBAN