The Free Women’s Movement’s (Tevgera Jinên Azad’s – TJA’s) spokesperson Ayşe Gökkan is in detention in the context of an investigation that was launched in Mardin (Merdin) in Turkey. This is the 83rd time she has been detained.
Over 200 investigations have also been launched against Gökkan. TJA activists and the Peoples’ Democratic Party’s (HDP’s) Şanlıurfa (Riha) deputy Ayşe Sürücü has criticized her detention.
According to JinNews, Gökkan was detained whilst she was in her house in Diyarbakır (Amed) on 30 October as part of an investigation that was carried out in Mardin city in eastern Turkey. She was detained alongside thirteen other people due to an investigation that was launched over events in 2014. She will be held under custody for four days.
Five different investigations
Judicial proceedings have been launched over five different investigations into Gökkan. The accusations pertain to “terror organization membership”. There are also over 200 investigation files dating back to when she was the Chair of Nusaybin municipality in Turkey. Four investigation files, including those of Gaziantep, Diyarbakır and Mardin, have been joined together by Diyarbakır’s 9th High Penal Court on the grounds that they refer to the same charges. It is expected that other files will be added as well.
‘The current situation is not legal’
Gökkan’s lawyer Muharrem Şahin stated that launching five different investigations over five different charges was not legal and said: “The current situation is not legal. One person cannot be a member of five different organizations from different places in five years at same time. The investigations launched with the same reasons in Gaziantep, Mardin and Diyarbakır were put together by the court because the investigations were considered abnormal by them”.
Şahin also pointed out that there were over one hundred files regarding the period when Gökkan was chair of Nusaybin municipality and added that these investigations that have been launched against her are illegal. Gökkan, elected as the spokesperson of the TJA during its last congress, had also been detained on 14 June during an investigation that had been initiated by Diyarbakır’s Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office in 2017. She was arrested by the court and placed on trial on 24 June. Gökkan had been released in the second hearing of that case on 27 November 2017.
Reactions to her detention
After her detention, Peoples’ Democratic Party Şanlıurfa (Riha) deputy Ayşe Sürücü and TJA activists highlighted their concerns. Sürücü said: “Any woman will bend against your attacks. You cannot make us step back. Supression against women has soared under the governance of the Justice and Development Party (AKP). They try to make women silent. We will keep struggling against all these attacks. Release our friends immediately”.