First a government trustee was appointed to Turgut Özal University where I was lecturing. Then, my university is completely closed down with an emergency decree issued after the 15 July. All the properties of this privately-owned university are seized by the government and many of our lecturers including our president, an orthodontist by profession, have been locked in jail. One year after the coup attempt, it appeared in the news that another operation was carried out against the staff of the university and 47 more were detained. I could not even learn who these people were. The trial of one of my close friends from the university has just finished and he has been sentenced to seven years of imprisonment. He is accused of three deadly(!) crimes: 1- Working at Turgut Özal University, an international university hosting 7000 students opened during the rule of the AKPgovernment, 2- Having their children attending to schools affiliated with the Hizmet Movement where the children of Erdogan and many AKP members and bureaucrats have also studied, 3- Depositing money into Bank Asya, a bank opened by Erdogan and Abdullah Gul and operating in accordance with the Turkish laws and regulations! I cannot get any information about how many of my colleagues have been released, how many of them still in jail or how their children are coping with all of that. The university lecturers could not even take their personal items, books, private documents and lesson materials from their rooms. All of our belongings have been looted.

A friend of mine with initials O.F.Y. with a gentle soul who cannot not hurt even an ant was reported to the police by his neighbour after the July 15 coup attempt, while he was trying to carry the books listed by the government as “evidence of terrorism” away from his house. It has been a year since he was put behind the bars for this. Another colleague of mine managed to escape the country by crossing through Maritsa River by the help of human traffickers. One of his children is still in Turkey, his teacher wife and two children are in Germany, while he is stuck in Greece.

Read more at [OPINION] MY STORY AS AN ACADEMIC AND COLUMNIST IN ERDOGAN’S TURKEY