Free Memik Horoz!


by B.C. Committee for Human Rights of the Philippines

Grassroots women and overseas Filipinos in Canada call for the release of Memik Horoz of Turkey!

As progressive and democratic organizations in Vancouver, Canada, we stand with the Turkish people and other democratic organizations worldwide in calling for the immediate release of Memik Horoz. We as members and supporters of the newly-founded International League of Peoples` Struggles (ILPS) are enraged by the suspicious arrest, detention, and insidious handling of the ILPS` newly-elected Deputy Chairperson Memik Horoz by the Turkish state.

Mr. Horoz is a journalist who has been active in bringing out the just demands of the Turkish workers and people. On 18 June 2001 in Istanbul, Turkey state security forces arrested Mr. Horoz and his niece Serap Horoz. Since this time he has been transferred to a special counter-insurgency unit. His life lies in the hands of a brutal and ruthless regime with a severely disturbing record of human rights violations.

There are over 3,000 political prisoners being held in Turkey, 1000 of which are being held in F-type isolation and prison cells, and all are the victims of oppression and torture.

Mr. Horoz`s arrest is one in the long and barbarous series of suppressive tactics the Turkish state has imposed on the people as they struggle for a genuine democracy for their country. Fascism in Turkey is clear, unabated, and intensifying as the ruling elite scrambles to maintain control under increasing imperialist pressure. Last year, hundreds of political prisoners were left on the edge of death as they protested their inhumane conditions in Turkish prisons. The state did nothing and let them perish, using human lives as examples to scare the people into silence.

As overseas Filipinos in Canada, who were forcibly displaced from our home country because of an economic crisis that cannot offer us decent employment, and a political crisis imposed by U.S. imperialism that has produced a series of corrupt, fascist and tyrannical regimes, we are also familiar with brutal governments. From Marcos in the 1970s to current President Macapagal-Arroyo, all have had their own brutal techniques to suppress the workers` and people`s democratic rights and aspirations for national freedom and democracy to maintain their power and corruption under U.S. imperialism. Currently, there are over 200 political prisoners languishing in Philippine jails, charged with mere petty crimes for valiantly fighting for the just demands of the people.

Tyrannical and corrupt local rulers of Third World countries and depressed areas are becoming increasingly brutal in these severe economic times as imperialism forces more instability on countries like Turkey and the Philippines.

Memik Horoz`s life is in extreme danger. Therefore, as overseas Filipinos in Canada and progressive organizations, we call for the immediate and unconditional release of Memik Horoz! We also call on all progressive and democratic organizations to help put international pressure on the Turkish government for Mr. Horoz`s safe release.

Please fax your letters of concern to the Turkish embassy in Ottawa and to the authorities in Turkey:
Interior Ministry: Fax: 0090 312 418 1795
Justice Ministry: Fax 0090 312 417 3954 or 415 4819

Please also send copies to the ILPS: Fax: 31 30 2322989

4 July 2001

Statement of:
B.C. Committee for Human Rights of the Philippines
Filipino-Canadians Against Racism
Filipino Nurses Support Group
Grassroots Women`s Group
Philippine Women Centre of B.C.
Ugnayan ng Kabataang Pilipino sa Canada - Vancouver