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Sunday, June 6, 1999 Published at 18:10 GMT 19:10 UK

World: Europe

'No justice for Ocalan'

Turkisn women demand the death penalty for Ocalan

Lawyers in Turkey for the rebel Kurdish leader, Abdullah Ocalan, have said his right to a fair trial is being undermined by harassment, legal obstruction and media bias.

The Ocalan File
"We see the stepping up of this campaign of insult and distortion just as we are preparing the central defence as a sign that our right to defend will be obstructed," a statement said.

Mr Ocalan's defence team has already complained of being physically attacked by both police and relatives of the victims of Kurdish violence.

Last week, they held a one-day boycott of the case in protest against pressure from the police.

His lawyers also say they have been denied proper access to him in prison, and have faced endless procedural restrictions by the court.

Delay follows commotion

The trial on the Turkish prison island of Imrali resumes on Tuesday.

[ image: Ocalan: Accused of treason]
Ocalan: Accused of treason
State prosecutors will begin presenting their closing arguments. After that there is likely to be an adjournment before the defence presents its closing remarks.

It was adjourned on Friday after a defence lawyer requested that relatives of dead Kurdish militants be allowed to address the court.

The suggestion provoked uproar among the families of dead Turkish soldiers, who have been allowed to sit in on the hearing.


During the trial, which began on Monday, the Kurdish leader has apologised for the deaths of several thousand members of the Turkish security forces in the struggle with the PKK since 1985.

He has also offered to abandon the armed struggle, but warned the PKK, which he leads, could escalate the conflict if necessary.

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