Two Hamshen Armenian activists released from Turkish jail

Panarmenian – Two political activists of Armenian origin from Hamshen were released from a jail in Turkey on Friday, December 8, reports.

Cemil Aksu and his wife, Nurcan Vayiç Aksu, were arrested last October by Turkish police due to social media posts that were critical of the Turkish government.

An author and environmental activist, Aksu, was arrested on October 25 in the city of Artvin for allegedly “praising crime and criminals” in his social media posts. Aksu is the local co-chair of the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), and is one of the editors of the Gor-Hemshin cultural magazine.

His wife, Nurcan, another activist of Armenian origin, was also taken into police custody on October 19 in a house raid due to her social media posts. Vayiç is a rights activist and a member of the Socialist Party of the Oppressed (ESP). The couple is from the town of Hopa in Artvin, in what is commonly known as the Hemshin region, around 12 miles of the Georgian border.

As long-time political activists and writers, the Aksus have written and spoken out not only about local history and identity in the Hemshin region, but also on environmental matters, women’s rights, and Turkish politics, among other matters.

The couple were reunited with their eight-year-old child, Arev.

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