Radical girls journalists is not going to be silenced within the face of repression

Assist us and go ad-free

We’re within the midst of a world assault on girls. Proper now, this patriarchal onslaught could be seen within the criminalisation of abortion in lots of US states, the truth that virtually 1 in 3 girls and women expertise sexual and/or bodily violence of their lifetimes, and that on common 137 girls are killed daily by a accomplice or member of the family. This misogyny can be seen within the type of the Turkish state’s assaults on the Kurdish girls’s motion.

The Turkish state is engaged in a large marketing campaign of repression towards the Kurdish Freedom Motion – one which has been dubbed a political genocide by the motion. There are at the moment 10,000 political prisoners being held in Turkey on costs associated to the motion.

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan‘s dictatorial regime is each socially conservative and deeply misogynist. Erdoğan has stated publicly that girls are “not equal to males resulting from their delicate natures”, and that Islam has “outlined a place for girls: motherhood.” The patriarchal nature of the Turkish regime is mirrored in its vicious assault on Kurdish girls.

The ladies of the Kurdish Freedom Motion have paid a excessive worth. For instance, Ayşe Gökkan – spokeswoman of the Free Girls’s Affiliation (TJA) – was sentenced to 30 years in jail in 2021. And Leyla Güven, the co-chair of the Democratic Society Congress (DTK), was sentenced to 22 years in 2020. The state has opened a brand new case towards Leyla in an try to increase this sentence even additional.

An assault towards girls’s autonomous media

This assault has widened to the concentrating on of girls’s information businesses. Earlier this month the Turkish state arrested 20 journalists – together with a number of from the ladies’s media organisation Jin Information. 16 of them had been remanded in jail.

Days after the mass arrests, radical journalist İnci Hekimoğlu was detained in a daybreak raid on her residence within the Turkish metropolis of Izmir. The arrest was reportedly resulting from İnci’s social media posts.

Nonetheless, the state’s assault on radical Kurdish girls’s media has been raging for a very long time. Girls’s information organisations have been censored and criminalised, and feminine journalists have been focused.

Learn on…

Assist us and go ad-free

In 2016, Turkey was listed because the world’s most frequent jailer of journalists, and the nation remains to be locking them up in big numbers. However the repression is strongest towards Kurdish girls.

Threatened with 20 years in jail for radical journalism

Over the previous six months, I’ve been a part of two grassroots political delegations that travelled to Bakur – the a part of Kurdistan inside Turkey’s borders – in solidarity with the actions there. The delegations included individuals from UK anti-repression organisations, Kurdistan solidarity teams, a radical commerce union, and three journalists from The Canary.

Our delegation interviewed radical journalist Nurcan Yalçın concerning the state’s makes an attempt to imprison her for her involvement in autonomous girls’s media.

After we met Nurcan she had been sentenced to a few years and 7 months in jail. She was awaiting the judgement of Turkey’s courtroom of cessation (in Turkey, defendants don’t usually serve their sentence till their attraction has been processed).

Nurcan is banned from travelling overseas, and has needed to give up her passport to the police.

Nurcan has been concerned in girls’s autonomous journalism since 2013. She began off by working for JinHa girls’s information company. JinHa has been made unlawful by the Turkish state – however was relaunched as NuJINHA (which suggests ‘new Jinha’). Afterward, Nurcan started working for the Jin TV manufacturing firm. Jin is the Kurdish phrase for ‘girl’.

Nurcan defined that, at Jin TV, all the roles are carried out by girls, whether or not it’s presenting the information to digital camera or doing the technical work behind the scenes. She stated that Jin TV is run democratically, and all the journalists and members make selections collectively.

“We attempt to make the voice of girls heard”

She stated that the Kurdish radical media combats elitism by sharing abilities amongst its journalists and never counting on formal instructional {qualifications}. Nurcan herself by no means went to school.

Nurcan stated that at Jin TV:

We attempt to make the voice of girl heard all around the globe. We need to be the voice of girls who’re oppressed, who’re subjected to violence, who face home violence.

She added that Jin TV focuses on girls’s traditions and tradition, and politics referring to girls.

In Turkey, all non-mainstream journalists are focused

The Turkish state opened an investigation into Nurcan in 2015, for ‘making propaganda for a terrorist organisation’. She stated that each one non-mainstream journalists are focused by the state, however that is worse if you’re a Kurdish girl:

If you’re not a journalist working for mainstream media then you’re focused. If you’re a lady journalist or Kurdish you’ll certainly face extra challenges.

Nurcan advised us that the state had began the case towards her after she was concerned in reporting for JinHa from Northeast Syria. She additionally reported on the rebellion in Bakur – the place individuals in lots of cities declared their autonomy from the Turkish state. An additional cost was introduced towards her as a result of she posted images of her members of the family who had been killed participating within the rebellion.

Secret witnesses

Lastly, costs had been additionally introduced towards Nurcan for becoming a member of Rosa Girls’s Affiliation, an organisation arrange for girls’s empowerment and to fight all types of violence towards girls. Rosa Girls’s Organisation has been closely criminalised, and lots of of its members have been arrested and despatched to jail accused of ‘terrorism’.

Nurcan advised us that the prosecution relied fully on secret witnesses, who couldn’t be cross-examined by her defence attorneys. She stated:

It is not uncommon for individuals to seem in courtroom due to the statements of secret witnesses. You can’t ask any inquiries to them. My attorneys needed to query the key witnesses, however they [the witnesses] had been by no means delivered to courtroom.

Arrested whereas attempting to do her job

Nurcan stated that she had beforehand been arrested in 2019, within the city of Mardin, whereas attempting to report on the Turkish state’s sacking of the city’s elected co-mayors, who had been a part of the unconventional Individuals’s Democratic Get together (HDP). The HDP mayors had been being changed by a state appointee – a course of that has been repeated all throughout Bakur. Nurcan advised us:

we had our cameras and every thing, so everybody knew that we had been journalists, however the police detained us – me and 4 different journalists. I used to be held in detention for eight days.

The 5 of them had been ultimately charged with obstructing a police officer. They had been all ultimately acquitted of the cost.

“We ask you to make our voices heard”

Nurcan advised our delegation that Turkey’s radical journalists want worldwide solidarity. She stated:

When overseas individuals [like you] come to Kurdistan, then you definitely see what sort of challenges we face, as each female and male journalists. We’ve confronted many challenges right here. We ask you to make our voices heard all around the globe This shall be an awesome assist for us.

The featured picture is of Nurcan Yalçın, by way of NuJinHa

This interview was carried out collaboratively with different members of my delegation.

That is half one in all a sequence of interviews The Canary has carried out with Jin Information journalists about Turkish state repression. You’ll be able to learn our earlier interview right here.

Assist us and go ad-free

Supply hyperlink