8 August 2012
Currently there are 2,824 students in Turkish prisons, recent numbers announced by the Ministry of Justice have revealed.
Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin recently released data in response to main opposition Republican Peoples Party (CHP) Manisa deputy Özgür Özels parliamentary question regarding how many convicted high school and university students currently imprisoned were under arrest on the charge of being a member of an armed terrorist organization.
According to Ergin, 2,824 students have been arrested since Jan. 31, 2012.
Within this number 1,778 students were arrested while the remaining 1,046 were charged but not arrested. Out of those arrested, 609 were arrested for being a member of an armed terrorist organization, while 178 students were charged without arrest for the same crime.
The Justice Ministry had no statistical data about the number of students alleged to have relations with more than one illegal organization, Ergin said.
CHP deputy Özel said the number of arrested and convicted students was terrifying.
It is above our estimations. Even the students unfurling banners about free education are charged with [crimes related to] the armed terrorist organizations. The prosecutors trying to create criminals seemed to have achieved that, Özel said.
Galatasaray University student Cihan Kırmızıgül was arrested for wearing a poshu scarf in Kağıthane in Feb. 2010 and was kept under arrest for 25 months. Since the piece of cloth called poshu was used for the intention of a crime, it is decided on his confiscation according to the Article No: 54 of the Turkish Penal Code, the courts verdict for Kırmızıgül read.