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Support from five continents for detained human rights advocates in Turkey

Amnesty International Belgium's Director Philippe Hensmans poses in a cage in front of the Turkish embassy in Brussels on 10 July 2017 to protest against the detention of his Turkish counterpart Idil Eser
Amnesty International Belgium's Director Philippe Hensmans poses in a cage in front of the Turkish embassy in Brussels on 10 July 2017 to protest against the detention of his Turkish counterpart Idil Eser

REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

This joint letter was originally published on bianet.org on 12 July 2017.

As a reaction against human rights advocates being taken into custody in Turkey, 40 rights organizations and defenders from five different continents have made a statement demanding the release of the detained advocates and made a call to the Government and ministries.

The declaration signed by 40 supporters reads as follows:

"We are writing to you to express our profound dismay at the continued detention of ten human rights defenders and to call for their immediate release.

"These ten human rights defenders were detained by police in Istanbul on 5 July while attending a training workshop. Two of them were experts from outside the country providing the training. The group were held without access to lawyers and relatives for over 24 hours and their detention was extended for seven days without charge.

"The individuals in custody are members of well-known NGOs and some of the most prominent human rights defenders in Turkey and other countries. Their detention constitutes violations of the rights to freedom of expression and association.

"Most obviously, this incident runs contrary to the rights protected under the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders.

"We therefore call for these rights to be immediately realised and for these colleagues to be released without any delay."

Signatories

1. Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo, (Plaza de Mayo Anneleri) Argentina
2. Vera Jarach, Plaza de Mayo Annesi, Argentina
3. Fédération européenne des journalistes
4. PEN American Center, USA
5. Canadian Journalists for Free Expression, Canada
6. Wales PEN Cymru, Wales
7. PEN Norway, Norway
8. PEN UK, England
9. The Arab Forum for Sexuality Education and Health, Palestine
10. Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA), Canada
11. Center for Legal and Social Studies (CELS), Argentina
12. CONECTAS, Brasil
13. Due Process of Law Foundation (DPLF), USA
14. Fundación Memoria Historica y Social Arhgentina, Argentina
15. International Human Rights Group Agora, Russia
16. Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL), Ireland
17. Madres de Plaza de Mayo Linea Fundadora, Argentina
18. Minority Rights Group International (MRG), England
19. Human Rights Committee at the Law Society (of England and Wales) England
20. Index on Censorship, England
21. Women's Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR)
22. Fuuse, Norway
23. GAYa NUSANTARA, Indonesia
24. International Planned Parenthood Federation - European Network, Belgium
25. Peace is Loud, USA
26. African Women's Network for Community management of Forests (REFACOF), Cameroon
27. West African Network of Young Women Leaders, Senegal
28. Federación Planificación Familiar Estatal, Spain
29. OPEN ASIA/Armanshahr, Afghanistan
30. Louisa Elkhomun, Echoes of Women in Africa ( ECOWA ), Nigeria
31. PAIMAN Alumni Trust, Pakistan
32. Niger Delta Women's movement for Peace and Development, Niger
33. RESURJ Global
34. Womankind Worldwide
35. War on Want, England
36. Association Ayotzinapan for HR in Mexico, Sweden
37. Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy, Phillipines
38. SPECTRA: Young Feminists, Rwanda
39. VISION, Pakistan
40. ATFD (Tunisian Association of Democratic Women), Tunisia

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