Turkey: Human Rights Torch Relay Arrives in Mersin

The global Human Rights Torch Relay arrived in Turkey on 1st March, 2008 and the ceremony of the relay was held at the famous Ataturk Park in central Mersin. The Human Rights Torch Relay was initiated by the CIPFG (Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong in China) on 9th August 2007.

The protest revealed the Communist Party (CCP)’s crimes of persecuting Falun Gong, its human rights abuses and violation of the Olympic spirit, calling on the Turkish government and people to pay attention of human rights situation in China and to boycott the Olympics.

The Turkish Human Rights Torch Relay Ambassador is Kursat Kagnici, former member of the Turkish national athletes group. He was a medalist many times in Turkish national sports games.

He told reporters ‘the Olympics is of superlative sanctity for every athlete, we should not let anything tarnish this holy and pure event, so I want to call on all the athletes with a sense of justice in this world not to take part in Beijing Olympics and not to give the CCP any chance to bring a stain to the holy name of the Olympics.

The President of Turkish Falun Gong Association Mr. Ozan Bugdayci said, Falun Gong practitioners were part of the CCP’s genocide just because of their belief in Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance.

Mr. Mehmet, a reporter from a well known local media, said the media had the responsibilities to let more people know the horrible issue of CCP’s practice of organ harvesting on live Falun Gong practitioners, the CCP’s crimes against Falun Gong practitioners had touched the baseline of morality and everyone’s conscience was under a test in front of this issue.

A university student taking part in the ceremony said, he was against the CCP’s persecution of Falun Gong, and he supported the Human Rights Torch Relay and hoped that through this relay the human rights situation in China could be improved.

Local citizens taking part in the event were very supportive. They condemned the CCP atrocity of harvesting Falun Gong practitioners’ organs. Many people signed the petition to support the Human Rights Torch and urged the CCP to stop the persecution of Falun Gong after the ceremony.

Local media, such as Cihan Haber Ajansi, NTV and Sun TV all had reports covering this event.

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