Turkey arrests Amnesty International Director

CLEMENS BILAN

A young female protestor blows a whistle and holds a cardboard by Amnesty International reading 'Free media cannot be silenced' near the Turkish embassy in Berlin, Germany, 03 May 2017.

Turkey arrests Amnesty International Director


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The Director of Amnesty International in Turkey, Idil Eser, was detained on Wednesday along with seven more human rights defenders and two trainers during a digital security and information management workshop.

“Her incommunicado detention and that of the other human rights defenders attending a routine training event, is a grotesque abuse of power and highlights the precarious situation facing human rights activists in the country,” reads an Amnesty International statement issued on Thursday.

The group was arrested in Buyukada, that is, one of the Prince Islands near Istanbul. The whereabouts of Idil Eser are still unknown. The two trainers – a German and a Swede national – are also under arrest, along with the hotel owner where the event took place.

The seven human rights defenders detained are the following: İlknur Üstün, of the Women’s Coalition, Günal Kurşun , lawyer, of the Human Rights Agenda Association, Nalan Erkem, Lawyer, of the Citizens Assembly, Nejat Taştan, of the Equal Rights Watch Association , Özlem Dalkıran, of the Citizens’ Assembly, Şeyhmuz Özbekli, lawyer, and Veli Acu, of the Human Rights Agenda Association.

According to the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet the group is held in a local police station.

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