Date posted: August 3, 2016
August 2, 2016 — Scholars at Risk (SAR) is gravely concerned about sweeping actions against Turkey’s higher education sector, including most recently prolonged incommunicado detention and related risks of torture and ill-treatment of hundreds of higher education professionals, in violation of Turkey’s obligations under domestic and international law.
These detentions and concerns of torture, coupled with reports of forced resignations imposed by Turkey’s Council of Higher Education (YÖK) on more than fifteen hundred faculty deans, suspensions of thousands of education ministry personnel, university closures, widespread travel restrictions and orders that academics abroad return to Turkey, suggest a broad campaign against intellectuals and intellectual expression, in violation of Turkey’s international and domestic legal obligations to protect institutional autonomy and academic freedom, including under Turkey’s constitution.
SAR calls for letters, emails, and faxes respectfully urging the authorities to ensure the earliest release of detained individuals, including higher education personnel, and pending this ensure their well-being in custody; ensure that any proceedings, charges, convictions, suspensions, travel restrictions or other penalties against higher education professionals stemming from their peaceful exercise of academic freedom and related rights are reversed, and pending this ensure that any such actions observe internationally recognized due process and fair trial standards, in accordance with Turkey’s obligations under international and domestic law; and ensure that Turkey honors its international and domestic legal obligations, including under the constitution, to protect institutional autonomy and academic freedom.
cc: Mr. Bekir Bozdağ
Minister of Justice, Turkey
Fax:+90 312 419 3370
cc: Mr. Yekta Saraç
President of the Higher Education Council, Turkey
Fax:+90 312 266 4744
cc: The Honorable Serdar Kılıç
Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the United States
Phone:+1 202 612 67 00
Fax:+1 202 612 6744
cc: The Honorable John Bass
Ambassador of the United States to the Republic of Turkey
cc: The Honorable Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
cc: The Honorable John F. Kerry
United States Secretary of State
Click link below to send an email to persons above.
Source: Scholars at Risk , August 2, 2016