Stand still to support peaceful demonstrators in Turkey

Sunday, July 28, 2013
Consulate-General of Turkey in Toronto, 10 Lower Spadina Avenue

Time: 12:00 pm

IFEX Member Initiative for Freedom of Expression - Turkey has called on individuals and organizations around the world to band together and stand still in front of various Turkish consulates and embassies in support of the peaceful demonstrators in Taksim Square.

Demonstrations will consist of seven individuals standing together in silence for seven minutes in honour of the seven individuals killed in connection with the protests. The stand-still is a protest tactic that has recently become popular among Turkish demonstrators, and has evolved into an effective symbol of resistance as it leaves the police with little opportunity to make arrests. Engaging in an action according to these specifications allows foreign demonstrators to show support for and solidarity with the peaceful protestors in Turkey.

CJFE is organizing a gathering in Toronto, in collaboration with 6 other like-minded organizations concerned with the right to free expression, including IFEX, PEN Canada, Amnesty International Canada, Journalists for Human Rights, the Canadian Association of Journalists, and the Canadian Media Guild. One representative from each group will stand still to show their support the peaceful demonstrators in Turkey. If you are interested in taking action, please join us on Sunday, July 28 to send a message to Turkish diplomats around the world about the importance of the right to freedom of assembly and expression.

Who are the 7 people who have lost their lives during the protests?

  1. Ethem Sarısuluk (27, worker): Shot in Ankara by a police officer on Saturday, 1 June 2013. A park in Ankara (formerly called Çaldiran Park) was renamed in his honour.
  2. Mehmet Ayvalitas (20, worker): Member of the Socialist Solidarity Platform (SODAP), Mehmet was crushed by a police vehicle driving through the crowd during a demonstration in Istanbul on 2 June 2013.
  3. Abdullah Cömert (22, unemployed): A member of CHP (the main opposition party), Abdullah died from a stroke after a blow to his head during a clash in Hatay province on 3 June 2013.
  4. Mustafa Sari (27, police officer): Fell from a bridge while chasing protestors in Adana province on June 5, 2013.
  5. Irfan Tuna (47, worker): After being affected by teargas during demonstrations lasting three days in Ankara, Tuna died of a heart attack on 8 June 2013.
  6. Selim Onder (88, musician): During his visit to the Egyptian Bazaar in Istanbul to buy honey on 31 May 2013, he was subjected to a teargas attack by the police. After having shortness of breath, he died in Izmir province a few days later.
  7. Ali İsmail Korkmaz (19, student): Attacked and wounded (causing a cerebral hemorrhage) on 2 June by unknown people while trying to escape from teargas at the Gezi Park Solidarity actions in Eskişehir, Korkmaz was in emergency services until his death on 10 July.


Read our joint action statement detailing our concern for the free expression rights of Turkish journalists and demonstrators.