Director of Amnesty International Turkey, Idil Eser, has been arrested and detained along with seven other human rights activists and two IT trainers, all of whom are being investigated for membership of an armed terrorist organisation.
Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s Secretary General, said:
“The absurdity of these accusations against Idil Eser and the nine others cannot disguise the very grave nature of this attack on some of the most prominent civil society organisations in Turkey.
Their spurious detention while attending a routine workshop was bad enough; that they are now being investigated for membership of an armed terrorist organisation beggars belief.
There is to be no civil society, no criticism and no accountability in Erdoğan’s Turkey.
Idil’s detention comes less than a month after the chair of Amnesty International Turkey, Taner Kılıç, was remanded in custody also without valid grounds. This is the first time in our history that Amnesty International has a director and chair from a single country both behind bars. They, along with all other detained human rights defenders, must be immediately and unconditionally released.”