The IPA today called on Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım to immediately release jailed author Aslı Erdoğan and linguist Necmiye Alpay and to remember his country’s human rights obligations as the state’s relentless purge of dissenters continues unabated.
In a letter sent today, on international Day of the Imprisoned Writer, IPA President Richard Charkin expressed the IPA’s dismay at the ongoing detentions of the two talented Turkish writers, as well as many others in Turkey in the same predicament.
In addition, the text denounces the ‘de facto closure of Evrensel Publishing House’, whose ability to function has been all but stopped by authoritarian actions taken under the extended State of Emergency measures decree, promulgated on 29 October.
The letter reads: ‘The Turkish Government has publicly given assurances that its post-15 July security operations would only target people and organizations with suspected links to the coup attempt. There is no excusing any attempt by the military or others to seize power using violence, but the subsequent purge by your government has visibly extended to legitimate writers, publishers and media outlets with no links to the coup.’
In closing it states: ‘The ongoing, ever widening purge does Turkey a profound disservice by leaving many thousands of people unemployed and further narrowing the country’s once rich media and publishing space.’
The letter, which was also sent to the Turkish presidency, culture ministry and Turkish embassies and consulates in Switzerland, where the IPA is based, comes on the heels of another recent statement by the IPA voicing serious concern over the muzzling of Evrensel Publishing House.