Husband-wife team probed for book
By Metin Demirsar Istanbul (Dunya) –
An Istanbul public prosecutor has launched an investigation into a husband-wife team for having written and published a critical study on the anti-government protests that rocked Turkey this summer, the authors said on Wednesday. The prosecutor summoned Nurten Ozkoray and her husband Erol Ozkoray to the main court in Istanbul on Friday to give testimony on why their Idea Politika Publishing house printed ‘Gezi Fenomeni’ (The Gezi Phenomenon), a 280-page study on the Gezi Park protests. The book came out on August 1.
The Gezi disturbances started at the end of May as an innocuous environmentalist movement protesting municipal plans to build an Ottoman-era army barracks and shopping mall in a park in central Istanbul. But the protests burst into nation-wide anti-government clashes. Some six people were killed and more than 8,500persons were injured in a violent police crackdown against the demonstrators. The Ozkorays, who are leading intellectuals, said the investigation had begun on claims that the book had “insulted public officials,” notably Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The Ozkorays are former journalists and public relations executives who have advised governments, political par-ties, and political figures, as well as private companies on corporate strategy. Mrs. Ozkoray is a sociologist and communications consultant, while Mr. Ozkoray, 60, is a political scientist and former reporter with Agence France Presse and Spain’s El Pais daily newspaper. Mr. Özkoray, a well-known advocate of democracy in Turkey, said he and his wife weren’t surprised by the attack on them by the Islamist-rooted government. Green Fascism “I was waiting for this assault on the Gezi revolution by the Islamic Government. As you can see, Green (Islamic) Fascism has no boundaries to attack free expression of opinion in the 21st century,” he said in a written statement. “As an intellectual, writer and publisher, I don’t accept any limits on the freedom of expression. My writings take articles in the constitution that guarantees freedom of expression and accept the supremacy of international laws over restrictive laws ... as the basis in expressing my opinion,” Mr. Ozkoray said. He warned that the investigation is against democracy and showed the dangerous side of the pro-Islamist government. “If we don’t stand against this with Gezi spirit, the country will yield to Islamic totalitarianism.” Mr. Ozkoray said.
The backbone of the book is a summary of Mrs. Ozkoray’s dissertation for a MA from the Bosphorus University in sociology, which Idea published this spring. The thesis written by Mrs. Ozkoray on ‘The Individualism and Democracy in Turkey’ sheds light on the Gezi movement by explaining the parameters of individualism of the ‘90s generation. The hypothesis here is that the lack of democracy and its institutions to ensure freedom and rights hinder individual development. In his part of the book, Mr. Ozkoray tells how Islamic authoritarianism developed in Turkey and why it stands against the movement of the youth and the people. He analyses the phases of power between Turkish military and the AKP government during the last 11 years; how they destroyed the EU project together, and how the media was tamed.
source : International Herald Tribune, Dünya, 27 sep 2013