Ankara voices 'concern' over arrest of senior Crimean Tatar figure
Ankara is closely following the detention of the Crimean Tatar National Assembly's deputy chairman by Russian forces with "concern," the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on Sept. 4.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgiç said in a statement they had received news that Nariman Dzhelyal, the deputy head of the Crimean Tatar National Assembly, has been "detained and taken to an unknown place following a raid on his house in Crimea" early on Saturday and that his whereabouts are yet unknown.
"We are following the developments with concern," Bilgiç said, adding that Turkey expects Dzhelyal and the four other Crimean Tatars arrested with him to "return to their homes and families as soon as possible."
Earlier on Sept. 4, President of the Crimean Tatar National Assembly Refat Chubarov said on social media that Dzhelyal was being held in the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) building in Crimea after he was taken into custody at his home in the city of Akmescit.
Russian forces entered the Crimean Peninsula in February 2014, with President Vladimir Putin formally dividing the region into two separate federal subjects of the Russian Federation the following month.
Turkey and the U.S., as well as the U.N. General Assembly, view the annexation as illegal.