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Turkey: DISK Secretary General detained by police

17 June 2016
Arzu Çerkezoğlu and Rosa Pavanelli in a demonstration in 2015
DISK Secretary General, Arzu Çerkezoğlu, was detained by police in Istanbul airport on 17 June, purportedly for “insulting Turkish President Tayyip Erdoğan”. Though later released, this does not change the fact that trade union rights and civil liberties are violated on a daily basis in a country “candidate” to join the EU.

DISK Secretary General, Arzu ÇerkezoğluThe Erdogan regime is continuing with total impunity its campaign of repression against all dissenting voices in the country. Arzu’s arrest is just another example of the long list of violations that have occurred within the last few months; this includes for instance the killing of sanitation worker Mehmet Kaplan on 17 January 2016 - still unresolved - and the trial of 11 public employees on charges of "making terrorist propaganda" for having participated in a demonstration condemning the killing of 33 people in Suruç. All this has happened under the impassive contemplation of Turkey’s European Union partners.

While welcoming the release of Arzu Çerkezoğlu, PSI strongly condemns the attacks on trade unions and members of civil society who exercise the rights afforded to them by the European Convention of Human Rights and ILO Convention 87.

PSI demands that the EU reviews and reconsiders its policy and support to the Turkish government, freezing all on-going negotiations until there is real and tangible respect for human rights in the country.

Speech given by DISK Secretary General, Arzu Çerkezoğlu, during the Route of Shame in Geneva on 3 June 2016:

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