Turkish police on Thursday detained 24 people for attending a commemoration ceremony in May for three left-wing, revolutionary students who were executed in 1972, the Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA) reported.
The detentions took place based on an order from the Antalya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office following morning raids in various locations in the southern province of Antalya.
The prosecutor’s office issued detention warrants for 30 people who attended the commemoration ceremony. Efforts are underway to detain the six other suspects.
The suspects are accused of spreading terrorist propaganda during the commemoration ceremony they held on May 6 in memory of Deniz Gezmiş, Yusuf Aslan and Hüseyin İnan on the 51st anniversary of their executions.
The slogans shouted by the group and the banners they carried during the ceremony are considered as criminal evidence by the prosecutors, according to the MLSA report.
The detainees, which include members of the several small, left-wing opposition parties and labor unions, are accused of disseminating terrorist propaganda for the People’s Liberation Army of Turkey (THKO) and the People’s Liberation Party-Front of Turkey (THKP-C), a Turkish Marxist–Leninist guerrilla group.
Gezmiş was one of the founding members of the THKO.
Gezmiş, İnan and Aslan were leading figures in the revolutionary movement in Turkish universities in the ’60s, a time of great internal turmoil in Turkey.
They were found guilty under Article 146 of the Turkish Criminal Code (TCK) for “attempting to overthrow the constitutional order” and were given death sentences in 1971.
They were executed on May 6, 1972 at Ulucanlar Prison in Ankara following the March 12, 1971 military coup in Turkey.