The IRCT welcomes the decision to release Sebnem Korur Fincanci, president of IRCT member centre Human Rights Foundation of Turkey. Dr Korur was arrested and detained on Monday, 20 June 2016, along with journalist Ahmet Nesin and Erol Önderoğlu (Reporters Without Borders) for her participation in a campaign against the suppression and investigation of the Özgür Gündem Journal.
Dr Korur and Mr Önderoğlu were released today while Mr Nesin remains in prison. The IRCT calls on the Prosecutor on Terror and Organised Crime to drop all the charges against them and immediately release Mr Nesin from detention. The IRCT also deplores the Turkish government’s ongoing harassment and targeting of human rights defenders in Turkey. The IRCT Executive Committee, currently meeting in Copenhagen and discussing possible further action in support of Dr Korur, has expressed delight at the decision to release Dr Korur.
“While we are very pleased to hear Dr Korur has been released, we continue to be deeply worried and shocked by the persistent threats and intimidation that our colleagues face from the Turkish government. It is abhorrent and unacceptable that people are imprisoned for believing in and standing up for human rights,” said Asger Kjærum, Director of Advocacy of the IRCT.
Following the arrest of the three human rights defenders, Dr Korur was taken to Bakırköy Women Closed Prison, while Mr Önderoğlu and Nesin were held in Metris Prison in Istanbul.