People’s Houses Co-Chair Dilşat Aktaş, other members taken into custody

People’s Houses members, including Co-Chair Dilşat Aktaş, are taken into custody after a police operation

Several People’s Houses (Halkevleri) members, including Co-Chair Dilşat Aktaş, were taken into custody on the morning of Feb. 22 in police operations targeting people demanding peace.

The People’s Houses issued a statement about the situation, declaring: “The People’s Houses is the country, and the country cannot be silenced.”

Free Dilşat Aktaş, the co-chair of the People’s Houses and our members!

Early this morning, in Ankara, a co-chair of the People’s Houses, Dilşat Aktaş, and various members of our organization were taken into custody in a police operation.

A few days ago, after the detention of our Central Executive Board member Kutay Meriç for defending peace, we said our word on the streets: ‘This is an order to silence the whole country. The People’s Houses is the country, and you cannot silence the country.’ We repeat this: You cannot silence us!

The People’s Houses has 86 years of honorable history and represents the future of our people. Our people will not give up defending their own history and building their future with their own hands.

The People’s Houses is the values of the enlightenment created by the entire progressive accretion through ideas, art and culture. It is the century-old struggle of our people to transform themselves from subjects into citizens. Our people will not give up the wealth it has created and will not be the subjects of anyone.

The People’s Houses is the struggle of this country to protect rights to education, health, housing, energy, nature and cities – in short, the right to dignity. Our people will not give up defending their rights and defending nature and life.

The People’s Houses is the struggle for a free and equal life for women and the defence of the right to freedom and happiness for our children. Women will not be subordinate, and our people will defend the happiness and safety of their children at the cost of their lives.

The People’s Houses is equality, freedom, peace and secularism. Without question, our people will rebuild our country around such values.

The People’s Houses became the target of the oppressive regime of the 1950s and the fascist regimes after the 12 March 1970 and 12 September 1980 (military coups). Yet it has continued to stand, as the People’s Houses is the people; it is the country.

The People’s Houses cannot be silenced; this country cannot be silenced.”

PEOPLE’S HOUSES

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