Demand justice for human rights defenders in Turkey
It should have been an ordinary day for İdil Eser and her colleagues, a routine workshop meeting in Istanbul. But police raided the building and arrested them. This happened just weeks after Amnesty Turkey's Chair, Taner Kılıç, was imprisoned.
After more than 3 months in detention, and a global outcry for the release of the Istanbul 10, they were released on bail, but their trial continues. And Taner Kılıç remains in prison
İdil Eser is the Director of Amnesty Turkey, the others are colleagues and friends from Turkey and abroad. Their names are Özlem Dalkıran, Günal Kurşun, Veli Acu, Ali Gharavi, Peter Steudtner, Nalan Erkem, İlknur Üstün, Nejat Taştan and Şeyhmus Özbekli. They are all committed human rights defenders who have done nothing wrong.
Yet they face up to 15 years in prison accused of “membership of a terrorist organisation”. Turkey wants to punish these people, just like they do hundreds of journalists, fuelling the propaganda that human rights defenders are somehow dangerous and must be stopped. This is ridiculous. Defending human rights is not a crime.
The Istanbul 10 and Taner are our friends and colleagues. They have dedicated their lives to peacefully protecting other people’s human rights in Turkey and elsewhere. Criminalising the defence of human rights leaves everyone vulnerable to the government’s ongoing sweeping crackdown.
We won’t stop until they’re ALL free. Join our call to drop the charges against the human rights defenders and let Turkey know the world is watching.