Turkish police forces arrest 60 anarchists in night raids

Turkish police forces arrest 60 anarchists in night raids

Wave of repression hits anarchists in Turkey following May Day demonstrations.

Yesterday night (May 13) Turkish state organized a night raid to various houses and anarchist social centres in a night raid in Istanbul. 60 people were arrested. It is yet uncertain if some of those people are anarchist or just related/friends of some anarchists.

The apparent "reason" shown for the raids are the actions of the insurrectionary/primitivist anarchists' stone throwing on the 1st of May actions. However, the groups that are targeted are not insurrectionary anarchists. One of them is social anarchist/anarcho-communist group called "land and freedom" (toprak ve ozgurluk) the other is Revolutionary Anarchist Activity (Devrimci Anarsist Faaliyet).

Till now nothing has been heard from the imprisoned anarchists. They are not even let to talk with their lawyers. Turkish state recently developed the tactic of mass raids towards every kind of currents in the left. Till now thousands of legal Kurdish Party (BDP) members and hundreds of leftists have been imprisoned for years without even trial and a clear criminal allegation. This is the first massive operation against the anarchists.

Some pictures of the raided anarchist cafe of the RAA:


Posted By

mikail firtinaci
May 14 2012 17:51


Attached files


May 14 2012 21:55

That's awful. How long are they likely to be held?

May 16 2012 15:30

Holy guacamole, this is madness! I once red in a Noam Chomsky something about him acting as an international observer for Turkish activists likely meant the difference between death sentance and life imprisonment. Someone call Chomsky!

May 16 2012 15:32

do ABC or similar orgs have any sort of presence in the area (or contacts even if they're not on the ground)?

mikail firtinaci
May 17 2012 06:02

There is hardly anything clear about the situation of the anarchists yet. It appears that turkish police -being highly ignorant about anarchism- caught everybody somehow related to active groups in Istanbul. They got anarcho-communists, anarchists w/o labels-community organizers etc together. However, the main "cause" for the arrests were the actions of insurrectionists...

So the real damage was received by the pro-organizational types, some of them being class-struggle anarchists whereas yet there is no news/definite info about any insurrectionists arrested.

Apparently today (after 48 hours of interrogation periods end) they will face the court. I heard that some people (including a woman who was in her 8 month of pregnancy) are released. I will update as soon as I hear more.

I do not have any contact with those people and I am mostly summarizing the stuff from online forums/papers. But still if you have any chance of making this heard widely that may help the arrested people. The people will be tried on "terrorism/illegal organization" and this is serious in Turkey. We will see what happens...

mikail firtinaci
May 17 2012 06:14

Just to give an example both on the tense political situation in turkey and on the reasons why these arrests are not an exceptional case against the anarchists: today 62 more people are arrested alleged to be related to the semi legal front organization of PKK (Kurdish Workers' Party).

These kind of arrests are continuing since AKP have come to government and directed to two main targets: on the left and on the military. Some people think AKP being self confident that it can not be brought down through an election is fearful of a military-left coalition for a coup against itself. In fact the main target of political arrests were initially the secularists. Then the scope widened to every shade of left. What is strange is this is the first time that anarchists have been targeted in such a way in turkish history!

May 21 2012 16:02

Some updates:

15 out of 60 people sent to court with the demand of arrest and rest was released


Jun 4 2012 23:11

(en) An Open Letter From Anarchist Prisoners in Turkey to the Public

As known, there had been attack to some banks and companies which are around the MecidiyekÃy-ÅiÅli by some anarchists who are within the Anarchist block on 1st of May 2012. We, as 9 of the 60 people who had been taken to the custody with the blames of the Police Department. We, as 9 anarchist prisoners whom were arrested by the decision of the 9th Criminal Court and had been put in to the Metris - Type T prison writing this letter. -- Most of us got under custody by the Counter-Terror Squads on 14th of may, 5 a.m. in the morning, and some on the following day. Our computers, telephones, flash drives, books and many other personal stuffs' got seized by the the police which were around 10-20 who came to our home. The claim that have been by the police department to us was the "damaging public property in the name of terror organization".
Jun 12 2012 10:45

june 12th: Freedom for the turkish anarchists

Freedom for the imprisoned anarchists in Istanbul/Turkey!
International day of solidarity - June 12th, 2012

On May 14th 60 people who participated in the Mayday parade in Istanbul were arrested and their homes searched. They are accused of "damaging public property in the name of a terrorist organization", because during the parade a couple of banks were damaged. Nine of them are still kept in prison. One of them (who identifies as LGBT -lesbian bisexual gay transgender) was the target of hate speech.
Using the threat of 15-20 years of prison, some of these nine were pressured during the first days (which they spent isolated from their families, friends and lawyers) and confessed to being leaders of a terrorist organization. This accusation seems absurd if one looks at the different parts of the anarchist movements they were active in - from animal rights to human rights, ecological movement and LGBT.
It is the first time that activists from the anarchist spectrum, the animal rights and ecological movement are accused of being a terrorist organization. The same method of repression has a long and sad tradition against kurdish and other left groups and individuals.

It is therefore even more necessary to show the agencies of repression that the imprisoned activists are not isolated, but that they have a broad, international movement standing behind them, which values the defense of lives and the dignity of humans and animals more than a few (broken) windows. In an open letter the nine prisoners speak for the first them ( http://www.ainfos.ca/en/ainfos26423.html) and the organization Yeryüzüne Özgürlük Derneği (Freedom to Earth Association) calls for international solidarity
( http://de.indymedia.org/2012/05/330671.shtml).

On June 12th people in many countries all over the world will demonstrate in front of Turkish embassies to show their solidarity with the prisoners and to demand their release. Organize actions in your own city ( http://www.mfa.gov.tr/turkish-representations.en.mfa)!
Do not leave the prisoners alone!

Support the turkish activists and demand their immediate release!

Anyone know of anything planned for today?

Sep 17 2012 15:43

There's a conference this week in which the Turkish ambassador will be at and I was thinking about going and asking about this (among other things). Anyone have any updates on the matter?