SOLIDARITY to Mehmet Tarhan
of Mytilini, 9 December 2005
Today at 8am there was a solidarity action to anarchist total objector
Mehmet Tarhan in Mytilini, Lesvos island in Greece. There was a picket
and a leaflet distribution to passengers of the turkish ferry boat going
to the facing turkish cost and the weekly big bazaar of Ayvalik. The
leaflet we distributed is the following:
SOLIDARITY to MEHMET TARHAN
Mehmet Tarhan is a Turkish, homosexual, anarchist, total objector. In
2001, Mehmet publicly denied his classification to the Turkish army,
declaring that drying out the human resources thereof can only stop wars.
In April 2005 he was arrested and convicted by a military court in four
years of imprisonment for "refusing orders". Jailed since then, Mehmet
Tarhan has been beaten and tortured by warders and other prisoners.
Because he denied to wear a uniform and get his hair cut, as a
punishment, they often put him into solitary confinement. He has been on
a hunger strike twice (for 28 and 34 days) demanding the punishment of the
guards who attacked him. Today, on 15 December, he is having a re-trial by
a military court of appeal.
The Turkish state (like the Greek) does not recognize total objection and
does not offer any possibility of alternative-social service instead of
an armed one (in Greece this possibility is typically offered by the law,
but with so much restrains that turns it to a punishment service). For
the Turkish army (like the Greek) homosexuality is an "illness".
Homosexuals wishing an exemption from military service are forced on a
manual anal examination plus on visual proofs such as photographs or
videos of an act of sexual penetration. In Mehmet’s first trial
public prosecutor and judge insisted that he should accept exemption from
the army as an unfit person on grounds of his homosexuality. Mehmet denies
been characterized "ill" because he is homosexual and continues supporting
his total objection for reasons of conscience. As he declares: "I do not
believe in the necessity of the state and I do not feel any belonging to
any state… The state claiming I am a citizen of it wants to use me
for military service, to turn me into a death machine and to make me a
part of the crime...
The aim of the state is to reproduce its power and itself. I will not let
it happen and I will protect my beliefs. I perceive the rotten report that
is provided for me because I am a gay as the sign of the decadence of the
state itself. As an individual, I will not serve for any kind of military
or other apparatuses of any state. I admit that to excuse for this is an
insult to myself and I refuse every kind of state permission or deference
of the state."
WAR IS WHAT THE BOSSES WANT
NO ONE SOLDIER, NEVER AND
Anti-authoritarian Group of Mytilini
83, 81100 Mytilini, Greece