Tag Archives: Turkey

Turkey/USA/AI: Amnesty International Calls On US’s Tillerson To Push For Release Of Its Turkey Chair

June 21, 2017

Amnesty International’s (AI) board of directors has written a letter to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson asking him to call for the immediate release of the organization’s Turkey chair, Taner Kılıç, who has been under detention since June 6, according to an online press release from the AI on Wednesday.

The letter notes the US State Department’s strong press statement on Kılıç’s case and calls on Tillerson to issue his own statement “calling for his immediate unconditional release and the dismissal of all charges against him. ”

In a statement on June 7, the US State Department issued a statement regarding Kılıç’s detention in which it expressed its concerns and said Kılıç’s detention is the latest in a series of detentions of respected human rights defenders, journalists, academics and activists in Turkey.

“These detentions, often with little evidence or transparency, are an alarming trend. We are closely following these cases, and underscore the importance of respect for due process and individual rights, as enshrined in the Turkish Constitution and consistent with Turkey’s own international commitments. As we have expressed to the Turkish government on numerous occasions, persistent curbs on free speech and other freedoms erode the foundations of democratic society,” said the US State Department’s statement.



http://www.eldiario.es/internacional/Unidos-Podemos-Turquia-Amnistia-Internacional_0_656184713.html (ESPANOL)

Turkey: UN judge convicted in Turkey resumes trial work remotely after passport is forfeit

June 19, 2017

Image result for judge aydin sefa akay

A UN judge found guilty in his native Turkey of membership of a terrorist organisation has resumed work on a stalled Rwanda genocide appeal while waiting for his own appeal to be heard.

Judge Aydin Sefa Akay, who sits at the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals, was sentenced to seven years and six months last week for membership of the ‘Gulenist Terrorist Organisation’ (FETO). FETO’s existence is insisted on by Turkish officials. He has been provisionally released on ‘humanitarian’ grounds.

Akay’s passport is ‘forfeit’ and he may not leave Turkey, but now that the UN court and its judges are in direct contact with Akay, it has resumed its work on Augustin Ngirabatware’s appeal against a 30-sentence for crimes that include organisation of a genocide.

The court’s first decision since Akay’s detention last September was to grant the defence’s request for a review of the original judgment. A spokesperson for the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) told the Gazette: ‘The mechanism’s understanding is that Judge Akay is confined to Turkey but… he has confirmed his ability and willingness to exercise his judicial functions in the Ngirabatware case.’

All of the judges on the bench, the spokesperson added, are currently carrying out their duties remotely apart from the president, judge Theodore Meron. Following Akay’s release from detention Meron consulted with Judge Akay, who confirmed his ability and willingness to exercise his judicial functions.




Turkey: Turkey Arrests 31 More Lawyers In İstanbul Over Alleged Links To Gülen Movement

June 19, 2017

Thirty-one attorneys were arrested in İstanbul on Monday as part of Turkish government’s massive post-coup witch hunt campaign targeting the alleged members of the faith-based Gülen movement, which is accused by Turkish authorities of being behind a failed coup last summer.

According to a pro-government Karar daily story, 31 lawyers were arrested by an İstanbul court while 14 others were released pending trial as part of an investigation in which 78 lawyers were detained for use of the ByLock smartphone application. Thirty-three other lawyers remain in pre-trial detention, Karar said.

Turkish authorities consider ByLock to be the top communication tool among the alleged followers of the Gülen movement. Tens of thousands of civil servants, police officers and businessmen have either been dismissed or arrested for allegedly using ByLock since a failed and controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016. Critics say the use of a technological application is not a criminal activity nor is it evidence of membership in a terrorist organization.

A letter sent by Turkey’s Security Directorate General to all police units in the country last October told police officers to obtain confessions from individuals who had been detained due to their use of ByLock because mere use of the application is not considered a crime.

On June 2, 2017, 22 lawyers were also detained by police and later arrested by a court in İzmir province including Amensty International’s Turkey Chair Taner Kılıç.

Turkish government have issued sweeping arrest warrants against more than 1100 lawyers within last 11 months on what is believed to be a part of crackdown on critics and opponents of Turkey’s autocratic President Erdoğan and his government.

So far about 500 lawyers including prominent criminal law attorneys and heads of provincial Bar Associations were formally arrested while many were forced to self-exile to avoid torture and ill treatment in jails. The government also purged at least 108 academics including famous law professors from law schools of public universities and fired over 100 government lawyers en masse.




Turkey/Germany: German Lawyers Criticize ECtHR’s Rejection Of Applications From Turkey

June 19, 2017

The German Bar Association (DAV) has criticized the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), which rejected applications concerning post-coup worker purges in Turkey on the grounds that domestic remedies had not been exhausted, Deutsche Welle reported on Sunday.

According to the report, DAV asked the ECtHR to ease the legal conditions necessary to accept applications from Turkey.

DAV Chief Ulrich Schellenberg, who criticized the rejection of applications from Turkey, said there was no working state of law in Turkey and that Turkey could not be compared with other European countries in terms state of law principles. Schellenberg added that the condition of exhausting domestic remedies had to be considered in a different light if one-third of judges and prosecutors were arrested in a short period of time and free advocacy could not be conducted due to oppression in a country.

A ruling by the ECtHR on last Monday turned down an application by a fired Turkish teacher on the grounds that he had not yet exhausted all domestic remedies. The European court referred to a commission that was announced by the Turkish government to review situations of state workers who have been dismissed by government decrees following a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016, as a means of solution for Gökhan Köksal, a Turkish primary school teacher who had submitted a petition for the court to hear his case.


Turkey: Arbitrary detention and judicial harassment of Mr. Taner Kilic

June 16, 2017

OMCT LogoOMCT logo

TUR 003 / 0617 / OBS 064

Arbitrary detention /

Judicial harassment


The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Turkey.

Description of the situation:

The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the arbitrary detention and judicial harassment of Mr. Taner Kılıç, a founding member of Amnesty International Turkey, and Chair of its Board of Directors since 2014. Mr. Kılıç has also played a strong role in advocating for refugee rights as a lawyer, and among domestic non-governmental groups and others working on the issue.

According to the information received, on June 6, 2017, at 6:30 am, Mr. Taner Kılıç was detained at his place of residence by the Anti-Terror Branch of the Izmir police. The Turkish police searched both his home and office. 18 other lawyers were detained alongside with Mr. Taner Kılıç. The detention orders were issued referring to the ongoing investigation into individuals suspected to be members of the so-called “Fethullah Gülen Terrorist Organisation”, which the Turkish Government accuses of having instigated the failed coup d’état last year.

On June 9, 2017, the Turkish prosecution charged Mr. Taner Kılıç with “membership of a terrorist organisation”, namely the “Fethullah Gülen Terrorist Organisation”. At the court hearing, the prosecution pointed out as “evidence” of Mr. Taner Kılıç’s alleged link with the Gülen movement his alleged use of a secure mobile messaging application, called Bylock, that the authorities claim to have been used by members of the Gülen movement. Mr. Taner Kılıç denies ever having downloaded or used Bylock, and no concrete evidence was provided in court against Mr. Taner Kılıç.

As of publishing this Appeal, Mr. Taner Kılıç remains in pre-trial detention in Izmir.


Turkey/Amnesty International: Amnesty launches campaign for release of AI Turkey chairman

June 16, 2017

Amnesty launches campaign for release of AI Turkey chairman

The London-based human rights organization Amnesty International (AI) has launched a campaign for urgent action against the recent imprisonment of Taner Kılıç, a lawyer and the chairman of AI Turkey’s board.

AI kicked off the campaign on Twitter on June 14 to support Kılıç, calling for his release, with the hashtag #FreeTanerKılıç.

Since then, members of the organization have been sending messages of solidarity by taking photos with #FreeTanerKılıc signs and posting them on social media.

Kılıç is a founding member of AI Turkey and has been chairman of its board of directors since 2014. He has also played a strong role in advocating for refugee rights as a lawyer and with domestic nongovernmental groups and others working on these issues.

He is accused of using the ByLock smartphone application.

ByLock is considered by Turkish authorities to be the top communication tool among followers of the Gülen group, which is accused by the government of masterminding a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen group.

The group denies any involvement.




http://www.lalibre.be/actu/international/en-turquie-dans-les-annees-90-on-tuait-les-journalistes-aujourd-hui-on-veut-tuer-le-journalisme-reportage-5942bb09cd700a1d990a9c0f (FRANCAIS)

Turkey: Avukat Deniz Sürgüt ev hapsiyle tahliye edildi



22 aydır tutuklu olan, eski İnsan Hakları Derneği yöneticisi ve KHK ile kapatılan Özgürlükçü Hukukçular Derneği üyesi  avukat Deniz Sürgüt tahliye edildi.

Güneydoğu’da yaşanılan hak ihlali iddialarını raporlaştırmak için gittiği Şırnak’ın İdil ilçesinde, 6 Ağustos 2016 tarihinde gözaltına alınan avukat Deniz Sürgüt, tutuklanarak cezaevine gönderildi. 2 yıla yakın süredir tutuklu olan Sürgüt, bugün görülen duruşmada ev hapsi verilerek tahliye edildi.

20’ye yakın Özgürlükçü Hukukçular Platformu üyesi avukat, Sürgüt’ü karşılamaya gidiyor. Sürgüt, Gümüşhane Cezaevi’nde bulunuyordu.




(Lawyer Deniz Sürgüt, whose trial continued on June 16, 2017,  has been freed after two years of pre-trial detention.  More details to follow.)

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