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S&Ds make urgent call for release of Osman Kavala


25 Oct 2017


Global Europe

Strasbourg, 25 October 2017

On the eve of the European Summit, another low point has been reached in Turkey with the detention of Osman Kavala, a leading figure in building a more tolerant and open Turkey. He was detained as part of a secret investigation and an order was issued for him to be detained for seven days. A cross-party initiative in the European Parliament has been launched to urge the Turkish government to order his immediate release.

The European Parliament’s rapporteur on Turkey, S&D MEP Kati Piri, said:
“A man like Osman Kavala, who has devoted his life to peace and reconciliation, is an important pillar of Turkish civil society. His detention sends a chilling message to all those who hope for a return of normality in Turkey. We cannot and will not accept that human-rights defenders, academics, parliamentarians, civil-society leaders and journalists are all branded as enemies of the state without any evidence or due legal process.
“Before any judge has ruled on Kavala’s case, President Erdoğan has already personally attacked him in a public speech he made yesterday. I’m afraid there is no judge in Turkey who, under the current climate of fear, would dare to release Osman Kavala, even though he is innocent. Together with colleagues from all major political groups, I therefore urge the Turkish interior and justice ministers to take up their political responsibilities and to allow Osman Kavala to return to his family in Istanbul.”




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