Massive protest from the lawyers: We shall never surrender


ANKARA - Thousands of lawyers from tens of bar associations from all over the country gathered in a massive demonstration outside the Ankara Courthouse despite the ban of Ankara Governor's Office. Ankara Bar Assocation's Head Erinç Sağkan read the press statement saying, "We will continue to go too far ifs the bill that aims to divide and silence to bars is accepted as a law in the parliament."

Bar heads and  thousands of lawyers gathered in a massive demonstration  outside the Ankara Couthouse to protest government’s plan to pass the bill that would allow the bars to be split as their planned demonstration which they announced as the "Great Defense Meeting" in Anıtpark was banned by Ankara Governor's Office.

Police surrounded the courthouse with barriers and forced every citizen in the yard of the courthouse to leave as well as blocking the journalists to enter. The lawyers were able to enter the courthouse yard showing their lawyer ID's.

Bar heads and the lawyers managed to gather in masses chanting, "Defense marches", "Don't touch my bar", "Should by shoulder against fascism", "It's just the beginning, the struggle will continue". The lawyers also chanted "Feyzioğlu resign", referring to Metin Feyzioğlu, the chair of the Union of Bar Associations of Turkey (TBB) who has been much criticised figure regarding his pro-government approach.


Lawyers from the Diyarbakır Bar Association arrived to the meeting with their slogans commemorating the previous head of their bar, Tahir Elçi, who was shot to death on November 28 2015 in Diyarbakır's Sur district during a press statement he was attending. Chanting the name of Tahir Elçi" all together, lawyers from Diyarbakır Bar also chanted the slogan of "Long live the fellowship of the folks".


Reading the press statement on behalf of the bars, Erinç Sağkan, Ankara Bar Assocation's Head, said, "The bill aims to divide and silence the lawyers. This also shows the fear of the government. The government does not like the defense at all, we know that."

Sağkan called out to the government saying "Well you tried to silence us, your tried to kick us out the courtrooms, your tried to fine us in the most unlawfull ways and now you try to open a button hole on our robes and you want this darkness to go on forever."


Sağkan continued his statement as follows: "We have told the ones before you and now we tell you again. The first words of the previous owners of this project were, 'I want my lawyer'. Don't ever forget those words. Don't ever forget that the history records the ones who fight for the hope and the humanity and the better days. You say, 'These bars have gone to far'. Yes, we will continue to go too far as long as you continue to forget the justice and trample on the human rights. As long as you remain silent against the child abuse, the femicides, the pillaging of the nature we will continue to go too far. And we will continue to go too far ifs the bill that aims to divide and silence to bars is accepted as a law in the parliament."


After the press statement thousans of lawyers who chanted, "Defense was never and will never be silenced", "Shoulder by ahoulder to fascism" and "March, march, march to the parliament" began their march to the Turkish Parliament.

As the march began a brawl ensued between the police and the lawyers. Police attacked the lawyers using pepper sprays.


By the 5 p.m. (GMT+03:00) the lawyers continue their demonstration outside the courthouse. The lawyers raised a lawyer robe up to the flagpole as the video record of the moment of the robe rising up to the flagpole hit the social media. The posts regarding the protests of the lawyers in Ankara can be followed unde the hashtag of #savunmayürüyor.

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