Cartoonist Trivedi portrays 15 mothers and babies persecuted by despotic Erdoğan regime in Turkey

Aseem Trivedi is a political cartoonist and free speech activist.

A world famous political cartoonist and free speech activist Aseem Trivedi has drawn cartoons of 15 mothers and their newly born babies, who have been detained or arrested as part of Turkish government’s systematic persecution of the alleged members of the Gülen movement, to raise awareness in the world public opinion.

Indian cartoonist and human rights activist Triverdi has published 15 cartoons in the “Black & White – Online Cartoon Magazine for Human Rights” to attract attention to the oppressive Erdoğan regime’s massive violations of human rights in Turkey  and show solidarity with the persecuted women and babies under the cruel rule of autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Triverdi has presented his cartoons in the website by saying that “Turkish government has systematically been detaining women on coup charges either when they are pregnant or shortly after giving birth. At least 16 cases have so far been reported.”

The number of babies and children aged between 0 to 6, who are being held in Turkish prisons along with their parents, rose from 560 to 668, according to the most recent data given by the Turkish government.

Children are taken into prison in the absence of family members to look after them outside. Turkish government has launched a sweeping crackdown across the country, detaining more than 120,000 and jailing some 55,000 over alleged links to a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

It has become a common occurrence very recently that both parents are arrested by Turkish courts leaving no one outside to care for children. Pregnant women, too, failed to avoid government persecution on many occasions.

Hundreds of women are in pretrial detention in jails across Turkey with their infants, some of them less than six months old, due to a state of emergency declared after a failed coup last year, a BBC Turkish report said on last Friday.

More than 17,000 women in Turkey, many with small children, have been jailed in an unprecedented crackdown and subjected to torture and ill-treatment in detention centers and prisons as part of the government’s systematic campaign of intimidation and persecution of critics and opponents, a report titled “Jailing Women In Turkey: Systematic Campaign of Persecution and Fear released in April by SCF has revealed.

Turkey survived a controversial military coup attempt on July 15 that killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with Turkey’s autocratic President Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.

Fethullah Gülen, who inspired the movement, strongly denied having any role in the failed coup and called for an international investigation into it, but President Erdoğan — calling the coup attempt “a gift from God” — and the government initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.

Turkey has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants since July 15. Turkey’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.


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