Human Rights Association (HRA) is a non-governmental organisation dedicated to work for the defence, establishment and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms in Turkey.

Mr. Akın Birdal, well-known human rights activist, Vice President of the International Federation of Human Rights Leagues (FIDH) and former President of the Human Rights Association (HRA) is going to be tried by the State Security Court (SSC) in Adana, on 21 March 2000.

The court action was launched against Mr. Akın Birdal on 7 January 1999, for a speech he made in a meeting held in Tarsus on 18 December 1995. He is tried under article 312/2 that refers to "anyone who distinctly incites people to hatred and hostility by making discrimination based on class, race, religion, religious sect or origin shall be sentenced by imprisonment between 1 year to 3 years. …"

We call on the international human rights organisations and international community to be in solidarity with Mr. Akın Birdal in his struggle for human rights.

We would be grateful if you could attend the hearing to be held on 21 March 2000, at the State Security Court in Adana, at 10.00 a.m.

Best regards

Nazmi Gür
Secretary General

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