The first Gathering in Istanbul was held on March 1997 when International PEN WIPC organized a solidarity campaign with the civil disobedience action of 1080 intellectuals. 19 writers and PEN representatives from 12 different countries visited Istanbul. Their three days long visit was evaluated by many meetings with Turkish writers, lawyers, university teachers and students and visits to prisoners of conscience, observing trials etc.
Düşünce Özgürlüğü için İstanbul Buluşması Programı: 10.03.1997, Monday 11:00 – Press Conference with the guests, at the Journalists’ Association – Cağaloğlu 13:00 – Two gruops to visit Prisoners…
Düşünce Özgürlüğü için İstanbul Buluşması Programı:
11:00 – Press Conference with the guests, at the Journalists’ Association – Cağaloğlu
13:00 – Two gruops to visit Prisoners of Conscience. Dr. Ismail Beşikçi and his Publisher Ünsal Öztürk in Bursa, and journalist Işik Yurtçu in Adapazari prisons.
11:00 – Hearing of KAFKA trial. Justice House, Sultanahmet
15:00 – Forum at Istanbul University – Beyazit. Organized by the students and teachers together.
18:00 – “Legislation and the Right of Expression”. Organized by Istanbul Bar Association.
11:00 – Visiting the State Prosecutor at the State Security Court to declare own crime.
15:00 – “Writers and the Freedom of Expression”. Meeting of writers and artists, organized by Turkish PEN, the Writers’ Syndicate of Turkey and Association of Literarists.
The Participants of the Gathering in Istanbul for Freedom of Expression:
Alexander Tkachenko (Author, President of Russian PEN)
Avraham Heffner (Author – Israel)
Hanan Awwad (President of Palestinian PEN)
James Kelman (Author, 1995 Booker Prize Awardee – Great Britain)
Jehuda Atlas (Writer – Israel)
Joanne Leedom-Ackerman (International PEN, Writers in Prison Committe Chair)
Kalevi Haikara (Journalist, Finnish PEN)
Lars Erik Blomqvist (Swedish Writers’ Union)
Louise Gareau Des-Bois (Vice President of Quebec PEN)
Maja Bejerano (Writer – Israel)
Maria van Daalen (Poet, Dutch PEN)
Milo van der Burgt (Amnesty International – Holland)
Moris Farhi (Author, International PEN Writers in Prison Comittee)
Ola Sunesson (Journalist, Swedish PEN)
Puah Shalev Toren (Poet, Israeli PEN)
Rajvinder Singh (Author, East German PEN)
Rob Brouwer (Amnesty International – Holland)
Ronen Zeidel (Amnesty International – Israel)
Shulamit Kuriansky (Poet, Israeli PEN)
Soledad Santiago (San Miguel PEN – Mexico)