Responding to a speech today by Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, in which he criticized Amnesty International’s findings that some people detained in connection with Turkey’s failed coup attempt had been beaten and tortured, Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s Secretary General said:
“From day one, Amnesty International has repeatedly condemned the appalling violence committed by those behind the July 15 failed coup attempt. The organization has called for the Turkish government to bring the coup plotters to justice.
“At the same time Amnesty International has urged Turkish authorities to respect the rule of law and the rights of all those detained. The government must release all detainees unless there is a reasonable suspicion that they have committed a recognizable criminal offence.
“The serious human rights violations documented by an Amnesty International team on the ground in Turkey are alarming. These findings are based on detailed interviews with lawyers, doctors, family members and an eyewitness to torture in a detention facility.
“The sheer numbers of people affected by the ongoing crackdown in Turkey are shocking. It would be tragic if some hard won gains, such as combatting torture, were to be lost.”
Amnesty International has requested and held meetings with the government and hopes to continue this dialogue.
Amnesty International is an impartial and independent organization with offices and research teams around the world. A team conducted an investigation on the ground in Turkey for this report. Accurate and impartial research is a fundamental part of our work.
The organization reiterates its call for independent monitors to be given immediate access to detainees in all places where they’re being held.
Amnesty International will continue to document abuses and violations in Turkey as we do around the world.