In response to a request for international solidarity by LGBT groups, an IGLHRC representative attended a court hearing in February in support of Pinar Selek at the Istanbul 12th High Criminal Court. Ms. Selek, a well-known feminist, sociologist, peace activist and scholar, has been targeted by Turkish authorities for her work on behalf of ethnic Kurdish groups. Although twice acquitted, authorities continue to push for criminal sanction of Ms. Selek – including through bringing allegations related to national security charges.
Pinar Selek, Turkish feminist, sociologist, peace activist and scholar.
IGLHRC’s representative read a statement on behalf of the organization and noted its hope that "the case of P?nar Selek will show the independence, transparency and fairness of the Turkish judicial system. Selek has been unlawfully on trial for her identity as an activist and author and her work on minority groups." The statement went on to request that the govenrment drop all charges against P?nar Selek and commit to concrete steps to lawfully protect human rights defenders.
IGLHRC’s statement was widely welcomed by the Turkish media, including major newspapers in Turkey which published the full statement. Although this lower court in Istanbul had reitterated its decision to acquit Ms. Selek, the Supreme Court had asked for a conviction and life sentence. The case’s final decision is still pending.