A Tree Dies, a Nation Rises (Κων/πολη: ανταπόκριση – Istanbul: reporting)

people_crossng the bridge[ελλ] Ο Freequency φιλοξενεί την παρακάτω αναφορά της İpek, στην οποία η ίδια μας ενημερώνει για την πρόσφατη εξέγερση στην Κωνσταντινούπολη, εκθέτοντας παράλληλα τις σκέψεις της. Τα δικά μας σχόλια στο παρόν κείμενο θα ήταν περιττά. Όπως περιττό (δεν πρέπει να) είναι και το αυτονόητο δικαίωμα της Ελευθερίας της Έκφρασης που για ακόμη μια φορά καταπατάται με βία και επιβολή της σιωπής από τις κυβερνήσεις. Ο Freequency στέκεται ενάντια σε αυτή τη βία και την σιωπή και εκφράζει την Αλληλεγγύη του στους διαδηλωτές του Taksim Gezi Park. | [eng] The Freequency project hosts Ipek’s report from Istanbul and the recent events at the Gezi Park (Taksim). Please, read and share. [Text in ENGLISH]

A Tree Dies, a Nation Rises

For the last 4 days a group of young demonstrators have occupied Gezi Park at İstanbul’s main and most popular square Taksim in an effort to stop the demolition of a public space to construct a shopping mall favored by government and the proponents. As the plans of demolishing the walls of the park started on Monday night, a group of demonstrators started camping in the park with the motto ‘DirenGezi (OccupyGezi)’ and their occupation succeeded in halting the efforts to cut down the trees of the park.

The protest has started in a peaceful way as demonstrators were reading books and singing together in order to keep out the bulldozers. However, the police repression has been very harsh with excessive amount of violence; demonstrators were trapped with tear/pepper gas, plastic bullets and water cannon crossfires. The attacks have been out of control, more than hundreds of unarmed civilian protestors are hospitalized and arrested, and one 26 year-old girl Aylin, died after smashed by a police tank as approved by legal authorities this morning.

DirenGezi (OccupyGezi) has become a matter about more than saving only the environment; a symbol of violation of human rights, freedom of speech, against a government not only suppresses but attacks its own people.

The resistance has not only been just a demonstration for protecting a park, but it has turned out to be a milestone in Turkish political history for the last two decades; a revolt of a generation which has been successfully depoliticised since 1970s. This generation; without age, ethnic, politic and religious discrimination has finally succeeded to come together against the laws that have been enacted to attack private lives, the anti-democratic practices of a fascist and corrupted government.

On the 5th day of the resistance, this Saturday morning 40.000 people are crossing the Bosphorus bridge marching towards Taksim. The revolt has also spread to Ankara, İzmir, Antalya and many other cities. More than 50 cities all around the country and the world people are gathering together to support the resistance. Countless buses are taking citizens to İstanbul to join the resistance against oppressive government.

No mainstream media has been reporting on the events that are taking place, all that are taking place can be followed via social media. After all these, this morning, Prime Minister Erdoğan,  by denying up to the end, once again mentioned the success of the economical growth and good credit notes stating that whats happening all around is just because of some marginal groups leaded by opposition party and blamed media for provoking (!) the riots.

When it comes to the answer of the question, why the Turkish people who shut eyes to the corrupted and anti-democratic governing of Justice and Development Party (AKP) for more than 10 years has come to this point, we should consider which actions have been taken for the last two weeks in Turkey signaling the attack to private lives of people, such as adopting alcohol restrictions and banning sales between 10 pm to 06.00 am, for the sake of public health, safety and order, naming the 3rd Bosphorus bridge as Yavuz Sultan Selim, one of the Ottoman emperors known for his policies against Alevi sectarian of Islam religion, vetoing gay rights amendments in the constitution, restricting the sales of morning-after pills without prescription and finally cutting the old trees in one of the few remaining green spaces left in Taksim to construct a shopping mall, as parallel to their party programme.

All these have shown how the state can intervene the private lives of people and secularism within such a short period of time leading to awakening a nation for their freedom. This time there is only one big difference that, this seeking for freedom overcomes the political, religious and social differences and brings all segments of society, unprecedentedly together for the first time in Turkish political life.

Though it is early to presume whether it will turn out to be Tiananmen in China or Tahrir in Egypt, but apparently Taksim Gezi Park will be the symbol of a nation’s resistance and 31st of May will remain as a historical day for the Turkish society. It is the wakening of a nation and the time of a belated unity and solidarity, hopefully that will be the beginning of Turkish spring with the slogan ‘A tree dies, a nation rises!‘.

Text: İpek

More Material / Live Update (links – news – images) at:
http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com/ & http://turkishspring.nadir.org/index_eng.html
Please, keep sharing via Social Media. Turkish people need our help in transmitting the Truth!

My eyes are filled up. But it’s not from the gas… There is a big reaction which makes me very happy. I’ve never seen this solidarity before!
[Erkan – Istanbul – June 1, 2013]

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