Turkey celebrates International Women's Day with batons and peppergas

French opposition to Turkey becoming a member of the EU has come mostly from the UMP who say Turkey is not sufficiently European and that Turkey would swallow up EU farm and regional subsidies.

I haven't paid much attention to those issues but what I did pay attention to was the violence committed yesterday by the Turkish police against women and children demonstrating at a rally to mark International Women's Day. It was filmed and it was horrific to watch.

The condemnation by the EU was not nearly strong enough.

"We condemn all violence, and demonstrations have to be conducted in a peaceful manner," EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn told a news conference in Ankara. "I want to underline the need to properly implement reforms. It's very important to keep the reform process going."

Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul expressed his "sorrow" over the violence and pledged a full investigation.

Considering what I witnessed on television I can only imagine the depth of the investigation. Men, women and children being chased, knocked down, beaten and trampled by police speaks volumes about the value placed on women in this country.

The U.S. and Britain say the EU must embrace a country that's both Muslim and democratic to help win the war on terror and encourage democracy in the Middle East.

I watched Turkish democracy at work and I'm not impressed.

The EU will run a so-called "screening process" for Turkey's membership parallel with accession negotiations starting in October, EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn told reporters yesterday. "Turkey should maintain zero tolerance for torture and respect the rights of non-Muslims to help its case for membership," he said.

I think they have much more basic issues that need to be dealt with as well as those Mr. Rehn is speaking of.


I saw a 2 minute footage last night on France 2's 8pm news, and as you say, it was unbelievable of vicious brutality.

For years human rights issues have been one of the key factors reproached to Turkey in view of its desire to join the EU. For years, we've heard about *steady improvements*.

So much so that lately I was personally in favor of Turkey joining in.

As of last night, not any more. Fuck that for a joke.

It would make a farce of our EU's charter of human rights. 

Posted by WhyNot
3/08/2005 05:02:00 pm  
Zero tolerance for torture sure isn't going to happen when people still can't gather peacefully to protest without getting bashed and kicked. I watched a whole group of policemen beating on someone that was on the ground. They began walking off and one of the policeman turned around and gave the protester another couple of hits for good measure. Obviously the police didn't get their updated humanrights initiative from the government. 

Posted by Dianne
3/08/2005 05:10:00 pm  
Wow, I see I've made the 'Fascist Assholes List'. Sweet! I couldn't have done it without unpatriotic lazy morons like you people. 

Posted by Jesse
3/08/2005 07:05:00 pm  
Pretty aweful stuff. Democracy without human rights for every citizen is mob rule. You don't reward a country for being the best of the worst. If Turkey really wants to step up to the next level, they have to do more than just be "kind of close"

Of course, my country put Alberto Gonzales in charge, so what do I know.....

(ps. Jesse, your idea of patriotism might leave the Founding Fathers shaking their head- funny how none of you ever have the guts to debate a real liberal)  

Posted by The Cranky Liberal
3/08/2005 07:31:00 pm  
"I see I've made the 'Fascist Assholes List'. Sweet! "

You're most welcome, Jesse. We like to give credit where it's due. 

Posted by WhyNot
3/08/2005 08:02:00 pm  
"If Turkey really wants to step up to the next level, they have to do more than just be "kind of close "

Exactly Cranky. Turkey's being portrayed as a model of Muslim Democracy with none other than Bush pushing the EU to let them join. Hmm It can't be that hard to make the needed changes so why all the procrastinaion? 

Posted by Dianne
3/08/2005 08:12:00 pm  
This isn't on the subject, but I thought you all might be interested in the psychotic ravings of this guy:



Posted by brogonzo
3/08/2005 09:02:00 pm  
"psychotic ravings of this guy "

This should be good... LOL

You are either one of the Elect your entire life or a Reprobate your entire life

Ah! Don't you just love that forgiving christian spirit? :-)

Yes, nice find, Brogonzo, I'd say he beats LynnKrapper by a good margin. 

Posted by WhyNot
3/09/2005 01:34:00 am  
Off topic. Brogonzo? Great find. I have to say that I not only agree with this post, but the site Brogonzo found is absolutely hilarious.

Too funny. 

Posted by Kender
3/09/2005 02:07:00 am  
Damn... why so much damn violence.. I just saw in the paper the other day a similar picture of Cops with a shotgun aimed at a group of protesting truck drivers here in SA. the guys were so scared they falling over each other in a pile to try and get on the ground.

Same hypocrisy, different country.


Posted by M
3/09/2005 08:30:00 am  
I'm scared to go past the first page, Brogonzo. LOL

Did anyone notice the title of the page?



Posted by Dianne
3/09/2005 11:42:00 am  
Damn... why so much damn violence.

Because we can't get past the predatory stage of development. We are not evolving.
3/09/2005 11:45:00 am  



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