|Artists, human rights activists and scholars join Freemuse in an appeal to the Turkish government for the dismissal of the latest court case against Freemuse Award winner, Ferhat Tunç.
Jens Peter Bonde, a former senior member of the European Parliament, Lebanon’s oud maestro Marcel Khalife, and Pakistan’s world renowned rock musician Salman Ahmad are amongst a group of concerned artists, scholars and human rights activists who have joined Freemuse in an appeal to the Turkish government for the dismissal of the latest court case against Freemuse Award winner, Ferhat Tunç.
He will be tried on 28 July 2010 in Diyarbakır, under article 7/2 of the Anti-Terrorism Law (TMY).
In a letter to the Turkish Prime Minister, Freemuse writes:
“We are deeply worried about the continuous harassment of our colleague by Turkish Authorities. We regret that criminalization of opinion remains a key obstacle to the protection of human rights and Turkey continues censoring and prosecuting its artists during a time when Turkey’s Human Rights and Free Expression records are under international scrutiny. Ferhat Tunç has at numerous events expressed his belief in a peaceful solution. He has always defended freedom of expression in accordance to the international conventions on human rights. We respectfully request immediate dismissal of the case against Mr. Ferhat Tunç.”
Freemuse in collaboration with Jens Peter Bonde and an advisor from the EU commission office in Ankara attended a court case against Ferhat Tunç in Izmir in 2007. Although he was rightly acquitted Turkish authorities continue to persecute Ferhat Tunç.
The letter signed by Freemuse Executive Director Marie Korpe and Programme Manager Ole Reitov has been approved and supported by:
Mr. Jens Peter Bonde, Denmark, Former member of the European Parliament, Co-founder of EUDemocrats and Foundation for EU Democracy.
Mr. Marcel Khalife, Lebanon, UNESCO Artist For Peace, recipient of The Intellectual Merit and Achievement Medal – Fez, Morocco.
Mr. Salman Ahmad, USA/Pakistan, Musician, UN Goodwill Ambassador, Lecturer, City Univ. of New York.
Mr. Mark LeVine, USA, Professor of Modern Middle Eastern History, Culture and Islamic Studies, Dept. of History, University of California, Irvine. Artist, contributor to international media.
Ms. Deepika Thathaal, Norway/USA, Artist, Human Rights Activist.
Mr. Klaus Slavensky, Denmark, Board member, Danish Pen.