European Union External Action

Statement by the Spokesperson on the detention of human rights defenders on the island of Büyükada in Turkey

Bruxelles, 07/07/2017 - 21:59, UNIQUE ID: 170707_11
Statements by the Spokesperson

The detention of a group of human rights defenders and long-standing interlocutors of both the EU and many of its member states on the island of Büyükada, including Turkey Director of Amnesty International Idil Eser, is a disquieting news.

The detention of a group of human rights defenders and long-standing interlocutors of both the EU and many of its member states on the island of Büyükada, including Turkey Director of Amnesty International Idil Eser, is a disquieting news that continues a deeply worrying pattern of imprisonments of a large number of journalists, human rights defenders and members of the democratic opposition in Turkey.

We call on the Turkish authorities to clarify the charges swiftly, in line with the standards of the European Convention on Human Rights and the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights, and in full respect of the principle of presumption of innocence. As discussed repeatedly with Turkish authorities, also from the point of view of Turkey's membership in the Council of Europe, positive steps are urgently needed to address the serious issues in the areas of rule of law and fundamental rights and freedoms. Freedom of expression and of assembly are fundamental pillars of a democratic society.