Resolution on the situation in Turkey

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FIDH (International Federation for Human Rights),

In the light of the fact that, since the AKP came to power in 2002, the regime has been seen to progressively harden its stance, particularly as regards the violent repression of Kurdish populations that has resumed following a period of détente, in the southeast of the country in particular, triggering an internal armed conflict; and given that these measures, on the pretext of countering terrorism, have also been directed against politicians, academics, intellectuals, lawyers, the media and journalists as well as human rights activists opposed to the regime;

In light of the failed coup of 15 July 2016 in which 274 people died and 2195 were reported injured;

In the light of the fact that, in response to this attempted coup, the government has increased repression of those suspected of having been involved, that 20000 people have been arrested and 7000 have been sacked for purported links to the coup;

Condemns the attempted coup in Turkey on 15 July 2016, expresses its solidarity with the victims and their families and affirms that it is the government’s responsibility to ensure that democratic principles, the rule of law and human rights are respected and that any change of government can only be brought about by democratic, free and fair elections and not by force; and

Calls on Turkey:

1. To ensure that any response to the attempted coup of 15 July falls within the rule of law and that the government refrains from any action that could lead to further violence or human rights violations;

2. To lift the state of emergency and the derogation of the European Convention of Human Rights by virtue of Article 15 of the Convention without delay;

3. To resist the temptation to respond to populist calls for reinstatement of the death penalty;

4. To ensure that all those who have taken responsibility for the attempted coup can account for their actions in court as part of a transparent, impartial and thorough legal process and that investigations are conducted in line with the international standards of a fair trial;

5. To put an end to harassment of academics, intellectuals, lawyers, journalists and human rights activists; to free any individuals held for having freely expressed their views or for having worked to defend human rights, and to drop any charges against them;

6. To allow national and international inter- and non-governmental organisations to investigate allegations of torture and abuse carried out against people arrested or held in custody and to observe their trials;

7. To allow the work of human rights organisations to proceed without impediment and to facilitate their essential work to promote human rights and to document and condemn violations;

In addition, in order to find a peaceful resolution to the Kurdish question which is poisoning relations between the government and the Kurdish community, FIDH calls on Turkey:

8. To re-launch the peace process and dialogue with representatives of the Kurdish community by starting negotiations with the Kurdish political movement;

9. To put a stop to the armed conflict in the southeast without delay by declaring an immediate ceasefire;

10. To take action to disengage from the civil war underway in Syria and to ensure respect for the right of the Syrian peoples to self-determination and the right of the Kurdish people to establish their own local autonomous administration in the region of Rojava with the other communities involved;

11. To lift the solitary confinement imposed on Abdullah Öcalan, leader of the KCK (Union of Communities of Kurdistan) and of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party), held in a high-security detention centre; and

12. To investigate strong allegations concerning the disappearance, while in custody, of Hurşit Külter, arrested in Şırnak in Turkey on 27 May 2016, and to shed light on his fate.

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