Two activists Markéta Všelichová and Miroslav Farkas were arrested on the 13th of November 2016 while attempting to cross the Habur border crossing from Turkey to Iraq. They were accused of participating in terrorist activity in Northern Syria and taken into custody.
On the 2nd of August they were sentenced to 6 years and 3 months for belonging to the Kurdish defence forces YGP/YPJ (these non-state kurdish groups are fighting Daesh/ISIS, the turkish army which has been repressing Kurds for several decades, and the dictatorial regime of Bashar Al-Asad).
Markéta had been to Rojava twice, according to her own words she joined the defence forces and fell in love with the region and its specific cultural and political situation. This time she and Mirek were on their way to Rojava, where they planned to set up a field hospital for fighters and civilians, and eventually help with defence, as she says herself. Together they made a campaign before their big journey, during which they wanted to acquire the neccessary material, while also not being afraid to make lectures about life, fighting and revolution in the region. These public activities also probably raised the interest of Turkish agents.
In an interview Markéta said she feels with people, who risk their life in the fight against evil, that she would like to help Rojava with anything it needs, and that she realizes that as a European she has greater possibilities how to get involved and help. A bit my own way, but with them, as she said.
Often we read about how Mirek and Markéta are not terrorists but innocent victims. We completely understand and respect this reaction of their close friends and family, but we do not think it is a strategy that is helpful to us nor do we dare to claim that both people in prison would agree with it. We do not want to waste energy by endlessly repeating the statement that they are not terrorists. Not because we think the opposite but because from historical and personal experience we know that the term terrorist itself is an empty term which the the state uses to label anyone it considers its enemy. In the Czech Republic it is used to describe anarchists, in western Europe radical islamists and in Turkey it is used to describe the people who fight them.
Markéta and Mirek chose to make a brave step and unfortonately fell into custody of the Turkish state, the biggest oppressor of the Kurdish people for many decades and who therefore sees both activists as its enemy.
Now they are both in a turkish prison. If you feel solidarity with them and want to support them then first of all do not hesitate and write them a letter to the following addresses. (Letters must be written in english, you will find what to write and what not to write in the section “ How to write letters„.)
Van T Tipi Kapali Ceza İnfaz Kurumu
Tevekli Mah. Erciş Yolu (Erciş Yolu 25. Km) Tuşba / Van
Turecká republika – Türkiye Cumhuriyeti
Adresa na Mirka:
Van F Tipi Yuksek Guvenlikli Kapali Ceza Infaz Kurumu
Abdurrahman Gazi, Km, Ipek Yolu Cd. N°25
650 40 Van Merkez/Van
Turecká republika – Türkiye Cumhuriyeti
On mirekamarketa.cz you can find out about the legal campaign, possibilities of financial support of legal help and you will also find more information and materials.
Don’t forget that solidarity doesn’t end with direct help for prisoners but with the continuation of their legacy- solidarity action. It is not neccessary to paint them as humanitarian and non-violent activists. Their case can help us to think about whether it is not a mistake to not stand up to genocide, people being forced out of their homes, rape, tyranny and repression, whether done by a state or fundamentalist or fascist groups, with all possible means. One just needs to look around and listen to their heart.
Anarchist Black Cross, summer 2017
„I don’t think my goal should be to live to be 60 or 70, I want to do something worthwhile. I am not scared anymore.“
Markéta in an interview for DVTV
Here is an older letter written in pretrial jail by Marketa (please understand her situation when reading) http://mirekamarketa.cz/sites/default/files/dopismarkety.pdf