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Jailed Turkish Cypriot objector released

Murat Kanatli

Murat Kanatli, the Turkish Cypriot conscientious objector who was jailed for refusing to report for reservist duty, has been released after spending 10 days behind bars, according to the Cyprus News Agency.

Kanatli has been refusing to join the reservists since 2009.

CNA reported that Kanatli told the Turkish Cypriot  media that he was not the first to spend time in prison because he refused to serve. He dedicated his own struggle to Salih Askeroglou, who Kanatli is said to have visited in jail 21 years ago when he was arrested for the same reason.

According to CNA, Kanatli thanked everyone who supported him and added that it was important for him to not feel alone. He thanked the prison staff and Turkish Cypriot administration for “showing good-will and allowing access to communication”.

“We will keep talking and keep explaining our case. This was just the beginning. The struggle goes on,” said Kanatli.

On his release Kanatli was greeted by members of the New Cyprus Party, members of the Çağ-Sen union as well as representatives from left-wing AKEL.


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