Demirtaş: With the solution process breaking down, these photographs have been placed in the file called evidence
The trial hearing in which former HDP Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş stands charged with “establishing a terrorist organisation, organisational propaganda and praising crime and criminals,” lasted three days. Ankara Serious Crime Court No 19 adjourned the hearing, ordering the extension of Demirtaş’s detention.
Demirtaş, in detention for fifteen months, is commenting on the third day of his defence on the overall file that has been created through combining 31 case reports. The secret witness “Lens” in Selahattin Demirtaş’s trial could not be found.
The third day of the hearing being monitored by HDP MPs and some fifty lawyers started with the presiding judge’s reprimand about a photograph. The presiding judge, starting out by saying, “I wish to raise a concern of mine,” pointed out that a photograph taken from the intervening party rows of the courtroom had been posted on websites and said, “I would have expected better from a lawyer colleague.”
The presiding judge, calling on lawyers not to take out their mobile phones during the hearing, then presented Demirtaş with three DVDs containing the entire file in scanned form. Demirtaş had noted on the first day of the hearing that he had not seen the annexes to the file, he had not been supplied with these despite asking and a fee was demanded if they were to be given. The presiding judge said alluding to this, “You have made a 200 lira profit.” Demirtaş said that he would ask for time to examine these annexes.
“As to the photographs taken at Qandil, they were distributed with the government’s approval”
Demirtaş commented as follows on the photographs and sound recordings adduced as evidence:
“You can send the sound recordings and audio surveillance to the criminal records bureau. There is not a single speech of mine that I do not stand behind or a single action of mine that I deny. We took photographs at İmralı and Qandil. These were not keepsake photographs. These were photographs attesting to the seriousness of this business. I did not bring the forbidden camera into the jail. It was taken by the official there. It was supplied in a digital environment with the Ministry of Justice’s seal. As to the photographs taken at Qandil, they were distributed with the government’s approval, because these photographs testified to the seriousness with which the process was being conducted. With the solution process breaking down, now these photographs have been placed in the file called evidence. Despite coming up against the judiciary under duress every day, we do not give in. Those who do not vote for us, conversely, try to make sense of this situation. And what we want is social consensus. In this sense, the ten per cent is better than the other fifty-one per cent.”
“The DTK is an organisation that is the alternative to violence”
Demirtaş commented on the “democratic autonomy” defended by the Democratic Society Congress (DTK). Demirtaş, noting that they used the slogan “A joint homeland, a democratic republic” in this context, and said, “It is not an organisation of violence but an organisation that is the alternative to violence.”
“The state showed tolerance and it was the Gulenists who set the trap.”
Demirtaş, holding the Gulenists responsible for the charges relating to the DTK, said, “Using reports compiled with illegal audio surveillance they created the perception that the DTK was organising itself as a parallel structure. They started to influence everyone up to the National Security Council and this is how the KCK operations started.”
Demirtaş, saying that the prosecutor conducting this investigation also had FETO ties, stated that the DTK may have had its errors but was a structure that had importance in terms of the transition to civil democratic politics and commented, “The state, government and judiciary showed tolerance and it was the Gulenists who set the trap. The DTK, which came to parliament at the invitation of parliamentary speaker Cemil Çiçek, proposed democratic autonomy as a model of governance to the Constitutional Consensus Commission. I mean, it did not advocate this through some sort of secret, clandestine activity.”
Deniz Yücel message
Following the prosecutor’s recommendations, Demirtaş and his lawyers were permitted to speak. Demirtaş, indicating that his lawyers would submit a defence over the recommendations, said, “Deniz Yücel has been released. May it bode well.”
Extension of detention ordered
In the afternoon portion of the proceedings, the prosecution recommended that Demirtaş’s detention be extended. The court adjourned the hearing, ordering the extension of the detention of Demirtaş, who was appearing before a judge after 460 days.