Turkey woke up in a nightmare on the morning of July 16. Hundreds of thousands of lives were destroyed after a failed coup, the perpetrators of which have yet to be found. Using the coup attempt as an excuse, the constitution was suspended through methods such as State of Emergency and Delegated Legislation (KHK), which were only adopted by coup governments.
100,000 people were sacked and dismissed from civil service. Yet, if you ask the authorities, they do not even make up 1% of the population. Tens of thousands of people and their families were left desperate and in serious need. They could not find jobs in the private sector and experienced civil death as a result. In turn, 85,000 people were arrested with no evidence of criminal activity and condemned to prison. Old, sick, disabled and pregnant people were imprisoned with no acknowledgment of their conditions; their lives were in danger. In the meantime, in addition to 25 suspicious deaths, hundreds of torture and rape claims came to the public’s attention, yet the authorities failed to investigate them.
The free press was silenced, and 186 media organizations were shut down. 144 journalists were imprisoned, and thousands of them were either fired or intimidated by oppression, censorship and violence. The most fundamental democratic values were destroyed, including freedom of speech.
The ongoing witch-hunt led to the illegal shut own of thousands of civic organizations. These organizations were seized, while property rights and freedom of enterprise were ignored. Thousands of business organizations were usurped, and the wealth of businessmen — worth 50 billion Turkish Liras — was extorted. Tens of thousands of employees were fired and left with no other prospects. In order to justify this theft, the authorities fabricated stories and explained that it was the nation’s money to begin with.
Since July 15, without any questioning, 28,000 teachers have been dismissed, 20,000 thousand have been laid off, 2,600 teachers have been arrested and 28,000 of those working in the private sector have lost their licenses. In total, 80,000 teachers lost their wages and were condemned to starve with their families. In Turkey, 6 different people have served as Minister of National Education in the last 14 years, and 17 fundamental changes were made to the education system. The future of young generations is slowly being destroyed. Still, despite this calamity, the authorities continue to deceive people and say that “the future of education in Turkey is bright.”
People’s passports have been seized, and they can no longer travel abroad. Those who are not intimidated by threat are oppressed by blackmail. When alleged “criminals” cannot be found, the authorities detain their wives, mothers and fathers. People who are condemned to starvation cannot sell their property and are vulnerable to massacre.
The situation is heartbreaking. The victims of State of Emergency and KHK are experiencing violence at an unprecedented level. Tomorrow might be too late. Support this cause by donating to KYM International’s campaign and say, “stop this violence now!”