We were at the verdict hearing for Ayşe Çelik who is on trial for saying "Children shall not die" and 38 civil disobedients who reported themselves at the prosecutor's to support her. In the previous hearing the prosecutor demanded acquittal for the civil disobedients as he decided that they had "intention to commit a crime", yet he demanded a sentence of imprisonment based on the Articles 7/2 and 6/2 of Anti-Terror Law for Ayşe Çelik as he considered her actions to be "in line with the objectives of PKK" and that she "made PKK propaganda through making Turkish Armed Forces look as if it is responsible for what happened in Southeastern Anatolia", and that she "did not intended to call the show to ask questions".
Civil disobedients pointed to the destruction and violence they themselves witnessed in Southeastern and Eastern towns, emphasizing once more that demanding peace and wishing that the civilians do not die can not be an criminal act; and they asked to be tried in equal terms with Ayşe Çelik.
Here is the full text of Ayşe Çelik's defence statement:
" Esteemed Judges;
I am expected to make a defence statement regarding the accusations after the prosecutor's consideration statement. I would immediately like to state that I do not think that I committed any crime. Aside from thinking that my speech on the TV show was not criminal, I also do not consider myself to be a defendant. I consider myself to be someone who listened to her inner voice and who articulated the unjust treatment as per her conscientious duty, I see myself as the injured party, victimized by a certain portion of the media and by the judiciary. Therefore, I do not present a defense statement, I merely making a statement. My statement is victim impact statement.
I was victimized by the widespread conflicts in the southeast of the country and the curfews that followed, as were thousands of others. I was victimized once more, when I was subjected to a mob lynch after I made a speech, aiming to make this unjust treatment heard with my cry.
There are many stories of lambs and wolves. Lambs represent innocence and wolves represent malicious powerholders in these stories. Our current state resembles to the story of the wolf telling the lamb drinking water down the stream "Why are you muddying my water?!". It doesn't matter how the lamb will respond. The purpose is to eat the lamb and to give a message to its family. With this trial, it seems that the objective ensued. The lamb is eaten, the message was sent.
I thank the scientists, politicans, intellectuals, artists and attorneys who took my words as their own and who believed in my innocence, and I repeat my words, which I believe to be still relevant today:
Do not remain silent. As a human, try to approach things with more sensitivity. See, hear and give us a hand. It is a pity, people shall not die, children shall not die, mothers shall not cry!
With my respectful regards."
Despite all the defence statements of the attorneys and their detailed examples from the ECHR decisions on the freedom of expression cases, the court decided to acquit the civil disobedients, condemning Ayşe Çelik to a prison sentence of 1 year 3 months, with "no necessity for suspension of the sentence due to its short duration". Civil disobedients will be objecting to the verdict and will take the case to the Court of Appeals, more importantly, they will keep saying #AyşeIsNotAlone