February 8, 2018

Turkey must lift state of emergency and release activists – European Parliament

MEPs condemned the recent arrests of people in Turkey who criticized military operation in Syria. 

The relevant resolution was approved on Thursday. 

“MEPs condemn the recent arrests of journalists, activists, doctors and ordinary citizens for expressing their opposition to Turkey’s military intervention in the Kurdish-controlled enclave of Afrin in Syria,” the resolution says. 

MEPs are also seriously concerned with the humanitarian consequences of Turkish operation and urge to stop it. 

The resolution also contains an urge to Turkey to lift the “state of emergency declared after the coup attempt of 16 July 2016.” According to the MEPs, the state of emergency is currently used for the further suppression of the legitimate and peaceful opposition. 

Since the moment of its introduction, more than 160 media outlets were closed, and the civil society in Turkey faces massive repressions. 

MEPs called on Ankara to release all of the activists, including the Amnesty International’s Turkey president, Taner Kılıç. 

“The funds destined for Turkey under the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA II) should be conditional on improving its record on human rights, democracy and the rule of law,” MEPs emphasized.