Situation in Turkey

MEDEL calls on the European institutions to demand Turkey to release the arrested judges and prosecutors

MEDELMEDEL urges all the European institutions to condemn in the strongest terms the brutal attack of the Turkish authorities to the independence of the judiciary in the country. MEDEL calls for the immediate release of the thousands of judges and prosecutors who were arbitrarily deposed from the bench and arrested without the respect of any basic principle of Rule of law, just few hours after the attempt of coup d’Etat in this country was declared to be suppressed.

Purging a quarter of the judges and prosecutors in matters of hours, and arresting many of them, are actions specific to totalitarian regimes, not to a democracy. This action against judges and prosecutors comes after the Turkish government dismantled the free media and civil society in the country.

It is hard to believe that judges and prosecutors who were only fulfilling their duties could be implicated in a still to explain coup and that the list of nearly 3000 names was elaborated in only a few hours.

In the last years MEDEL raised in its reports numerous concerns about the decline of democracy in Turkey. All those warnings sent to the European institutions were ignored, and the environment for arbitrary actions against Turkish judiciary and for the dismantling of the independence of the judiciary has been created.

All the European leaders have claimed the support for the democratically elected government in Turkey. However, democratic governments have to respect the Rule of law and the human rights of every person.

The European institutions cannot remain silent anymore to the gross violations of democratic rules in Turkey and must take action when the judiciary, the guarantor of the Rule of law, is attacked in such a brutal and arbitrary way.

The special situation in Turkey does not justify the purge and arbitrary arrest of thousands of magistrates. Security cannot be built neither on brutal violation of fundamental rights, nor on dismantling the independence of the judiciary, nor on the silence of the international democratic institutions witnessing such deviations from democracy. No democracy and no Rule of law can exist in a country without an independent judiciary.

MEDEL expresses full solidarity with the judges and prosecutors in Turkey who defend the values of democracy, Rule of law, fundamental rights and liberty of every citizen, and will take all the necessary actions to make sure detained magistrates are released and safely back to their families.

MEDEL calls on every judge and prosecutor to demand their governments to condemn the actual coup against the judiciary and democracy in Turkey.

MEDEL restates the call to all the European institutions to strongly condemn the brutal attack of the Turkish government to the independence of the judiciary and to demand Turkish authorities to release immediately all the magistrates who are arbitrarily deposed from the bench and arrested without the respect of any basic principle of Rule of law.

18 July 2016

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