Solidarity to Murat Kanatli from the Cypriots against the army. We stand in solidarity with his long struggle to defend the right to conscientous objection and hope that eventually his case will show the way to an organized and collective objection by the people of Cyprus to join the preparations for war, namely the army.
Today, 8th December 2011, (yesterday) Murat Kanatli’s case was tried at the military court in Nicosia.
Before the trial, outside the military court in northern Nicosia, 5 activists declared their Conscientious Objection – 3 women and 2 men – namely Faika Deniz Pasha, Cemre Ipciler, Ceren Goynuklu, Haluk Selam Tufanli and Nevzat Hami. Also a number of organizations sent their solidarity message to conscientious objector Murat Kanatli who is being tried at the military court on grounds of insubordination to participate in reservist call ups in 2009. Since 2009, Murat Kanatli has also been called to participate in reservist call ups in 2010 and 2011 which he refused to attend.
Murat Kanatli’s lawyers based their case on the following grounds and for these demanded that the case is transferred to the Constitutional Court:
1. Freedom of thought and expression
2. Fair trial
a. Military tribunals are against fair trial
b. Penalty is given without a court hearing
3. Gender equality
The judge reached a decision to transfer Murat Kanatli’s case to Constitutional Court on basis of freedom of thought and expression. The case is therefore transferred to the Constitutional Court and it normally takes 1-2 years for the Constitutional Court to call up the case.
The cases for 2010 and 2011 are still pending to be called for trial by the military court.