April 2011, TURKEY- Istanbul

Global Peace and Justice Coalition

“We had a meeting in İstanbul’s Bilgi University with 50 people. Our speakers were the lecturers Murat Belge and Nurhan Yentürk, university student Nisan Ak, and our member Sengul Cifci.

“Murat Belge, talked about his coming book The Military in Germany, Turkey and Japan. He explained why we have such a strong military tradition in Turkey. He said that the military hegemony was not from the military but from whole society. So fighting against it should be civil society’s responsibility. He finished saying that change for military could from below, from people.

“Nurhan Yenturk explained her report on Turkish state military spending. She prepared a report of military and other sectors and compare them. She said that unfortunately our spending is still higher than even the European Union average. She suggested that our military expenditure should be used for poor people, if this happens there will be less poverty in Turkey. Her report in Turkish is available here and here.

“Nisan Ak talked about the military hegemony of Turkey and why students should do something against it. She explain their student association activities for non-violent protests.

“Sengul Cifci, talked about general situation of the world. That each day wars and military spending is growing.”

More photos available here, with event info here.