In Erdogans green backyard

Moving my mind back to Turkey… By now, my time at Gezi-Park seems to be so far away. Sometimes I see tattered posters in Athens. “Solidarity with Gezi” is written on them. It makes me almost nostalgic. But even though the international media left the Gezi-Park for Egypt or Edward Snowden, the protests aren’t over. During the Ramadan time people met for a shared fast-breaking. As far as I know public park forums are still going on. And of course people who got arrested or hurt still fight with the outcome of these days. Furthermore people start to produce movies about #occupygezi as for example the “Istanbul united” project.
Let me share one last story about Turkey with you before we move on to Greece:

I could have stayed in Istanbul forever. Adapting the rhythm of the movement, standing still on Taksim during the days and discussing in park-forums during the night. I think there has never been a political movement I felt more at home. Every morning I would promise myself to just stay one more day. Every evening I would fall exhausted in my bed without any plans to leave… Finally, a friend’s invitation to Izmir gave me a reason to say good-bye to Istanbul and it’s empty, police guarded park.

Within the next days, I learned that leaving Istanbul didn’t mean to leave the Republic of Gezi. On Izmir’s coast open-air concerts were held and scenes from the occupied park and the street fights were shown on a big screen next to the sea. Unlike Istanbul Izmir wasn’t quite. For the first time in a week, I heard a loud demonstration passing by and saw street-art (In an overnight action all of Istanbul’s street-art, whether connected to the protests or not, was covered with gray color.).

SAM_0232If I would have taken a ferry from Izmir to Greece I would have thought all Turkey contains of open-air gatherings, park-discussions and demonstrations. But instead of taking a ferry to Greece I followed a friend inland to Konya. Christiane wanted to go to Konya to see the Mevlana-Museum about Sufi-culture, a mystical flow of the Islam. This was about all we both knew about the city we were going to go to.

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Gezi rund um die Uhr – Mittags

Eigentlich war ich am Freitag, dem 14.06.2013 gegen 11.30 Uhr zum Pilates mit einem LGBT-Aktivisten verabredet. Es war ein Freitag und der Gezi-Park schon seit dem Morgen, trotz leichten Regens, brechend voll. Als der Mann nicht auftauchte, oder wir uns verpassten, zuckte ich die Schultern und meinte zu einer mich begleitenden Freundin: „Nicht so schlimm, lass es uns morgen nochmal probieren. Vielleicht läuft man sich ja auch später noch über den Weg.“ Wir liefen bei Eren vorbei, doch der gab grade ein Interview für das ZDF. Eine Frau fragte ihn, ob sie den Park im Laufe des Tages freiwillig räumen werden. „Nein, wieso?“, gab Eren erstaunt zurück. Sie erzählte, dass ein Gerücht im Umlauf sei. Gestern Nacht hätte sich die Taksim Solidarity Platform mit Erdogan getroffen und gemeinsam hätte man beschlossen, den Park zu räumen. „Glaub ich nicht, wir bleiben hier!“ sagte Eren bestimmt.

SAM_0174Solidarität im verregneten Park

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