On Wednesday July 5th, Turkish authorities detained Amnesty International’s country director, Idil Eser, along with eight other human rights activists and two foreign trainers as part of a raid on a human rights workshop that Idil was attending.
For over 24 hours, they weren’t allowed to contact their families or see a lawyer — and no one even knew where they were.
Idil and the others were doing nothing wrong. Some are being questioned on suspicion of “membership of an armed terrorist organization,” a baseless and ridiculous accusation.
“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 organizations in Turkey. If anyone was still in doubt of the endgame of Turkey’s post-coup crackdown, they should not be now. There is to be no civil society, no criticism and no accountability in Erdoğan’s Turkey.” – Salil Shetty, AI Secretary General.
This is bigger than Amnesty International, and Idil’s imprisonment is just another sign of the current human rights situation in Turkey. Following the failed coup attempt last year, over 50,000 people have been arrested and at least 130 media outlets have been closed down, along with 150 journalists who have been detained.
These attacks on human rights cannot go unnoticed and we must stand up for those that tirelessly stand up for others. Stand with Idil and tell Turkey to immediately release her and all other human rights defenders.