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PES Council calls for immediate release of Turkish political prisoners


02 Dec 2017


Justice & Home Affairs

The Party of European Socialists has issued a strong declaration calling for the release of political prisoners in Turkey, and naming 10 MPs currently detained in the country by the autocratic regime of Erdoğan.

The MPs named in the resolution are members of PES associate member parties Halkların Demokratik Partisi (People's Democratic Party, HDP) and Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi (Republican People's Party, CHP).

Meeting in Lisbon a their annual Council, delegates voted unanimously for the resolution, which also identifies mayors, NGO representatives, trade unionists, intellectuals and journalists arbitrarily detained because of their critical views regarding the government.

The resolution states:

The Turkish government has been using the abortive coup on 15 July 2016 as a pretext and opportunity to silence all critical voices and democratic forces in the country. Under emergency rule conditions, the government has issued several statutory decrees that has suspended the law and violated most democratic rights and freedoms. There is no separation of powers in the country; the judiciary is under direct and heavy pressure of the government.

PES president Sergei Stanishev said:

"We denounce the politically-motivated imprisonment of elected representatives in Turkey. The resolution, adopted today by Europe's assembled socialist and social democrat parties, reflects and strengthens our long-standing determination to defend our allies in Turkey, HDP and CHP.

"We will continue for as long as necessary to make representations about this unacceptable situation, to draw international attention to what is happening in the country, and to fight for the restoration of full democracy in Turkey."

Since 2016, PES delegations have repeatedly visited Turkey to support their associate member parties, call for the release of political prisoners, and monitor the deterioriating political situation.


For more information, please contact Toby Wardman, +32 491 86 97 48 


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