Prosecutor uses PKK evidence against ‘girl with red foulard,’ lawyers cry foul


ANTALYA – Doğan News Agency – 16-7-2014 – Reports on a young Gezi protester, who became publicly known as “the girl with the red foulard,” which states that she joined the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), have been used as evidence by the prosecutor in her trial.Ayşe Deniz Karacagil, 21, who faces up to 98 years in prison for participating in the Gezi Park demonstrations last year, had joined the outlawed PKK months after being released from a four month-long custody.

Her lawyers have slammed the prosecutor, stressing that only incidents that occurred prior to the indictment can enter the files, denouncing any attempt by the persecutors to influence the court.“He [the prosecutor] cannot send an additional petition after an indictment is submitted to the court. This is a new matter of investigation and it’s against the law. We perceive that the prosecutor is attempting [to say]: ‘Pay attention to this, sentence her,’” said Hakan Evcin, Karacagil’s lawyer.

She had become a symbol of the Gezi protests after prosecutors linked the color of her scarf to socialism during her interrogation. Karacagil, and four of her friends, are facing between 24 and 98 years in prison for being “members of a terrorist organization,” “opposing the Assembly Law” and “resisting law enforcement officers.”Her mother confirmed last month that Karacagil joined the PKK, moving to the pre-dominantly Kurdish northern part of Syria, known as Rojava, and adopting the name “Destan Yörük” as her alias. Meanwhile, Evcin argues that Karacagil developed a close relationship with PKK convicts when she shared a cell with them while in custody in the Alanya district. 

“During her stay in prison, Deniz [Karacagil] learned Kurdish; she listened to them and eventually revolted. It was evident it would end up like this,” said Evcin, slamming the authorities both for sending Karacagil to a high security prison facility during her custody and demanding an absurd sentence for someone who did not even commit a crime.“If you demand 98 years in jail for a young woman who participated in a political rally wearing a red foulard, then you shouldn’t be surprised at all by the result,” Evcin said.