According report on Turkish daily Cumhuriyet, in Turkey, the investigations on academics have been expanded to include college students. Recently the investigations on student actions have been expedited, and reportedly more and more students have been penalized for ‘crimes’ including ‘reading a book’ in the school corridors. Even the students who graduated could escape the punitive measures.
The increase in the disciplinary actions at the Ege University since Professor. Dr. Beril Dedeoglu who replaced President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s appointee Dr. Cüneyt Hoscoskun through a YOK initiative as the president has been quite evident. Alcay Çelik who is a senior Philosophy major said that lately the investigations had been finalized and sentenced hastily. Celik who was suspended for a month due to joining the Ankara massacre protests received a further six-month suspension for showing his support to the Academicians for Peace.
“The Deans Office started an investigation about me for reading a book at the college corridor on the day academicians were dismissed from the University. I gave a statement regarding that day. They asked me which book I was reading. I stated that I am a philosophy major and can read any book. But they said not every book is ‘equal’ and that it matters. Among their evidence [for my violations of the university rules] were the notes I left on the suspended professors’ doors saying ‘We want peace. We love you.’ I told them that I do want peace and I love my professors. I have not heard the result of this investigation yet ” Celik said.
Ruhat Alkan who is a graduate of the Department of Psychology, could not escape punishment either. Alkan said, “I have graduated at the end of January. However, I am under investigation for my support of the Academicians for Peace signees. I have received a six-month suspension decision order, despite being graduated.”
Emine Akbaba, a freshman majoring in Leather Engineering is suspended for eighteen months and is banned from the student dormitories. Akbaba said, “The academy and academics will not cave in. The [presidential] palace cannot stop us. We will resist.”Ela Gonca İzmirli