European socialists vow solidarity with jailed CHP lawmaker
The Party of European Socialists (PES) has vowed solidarity with imprisoned main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker Enis Berberoğlu, whose appeal to the Court of Cassation demanding his release is expected to be assessed this week.
“We stand in solidarity with Enis Berberoğlu, Journalist and Republican People’s Party [CHP] Member of Parliament, arrested last year during Erdoğan’s crackdown on political opponents,” the PES posted on their official social media accounts on Aug. 7.
Berberoğlu, an Istanbul lawmaker and former journalist, was first sentenced to 25 years in prison on espionage charges in 2017 for giving daily Cumhuriyet a video purporting to show Turkey’s intelligence agency allegedly trucking weapons into Syria.
After a long appeal process, his sentence was reduced to five years and 10 months in jail in February this year.
The CHP had appealed to the top court to release him on grounds he was granted immunity from prosecution after being re-elected as a lawmaker in the June 24 elections, adding that his prosecution should be suspended until he is stripped of his seat in parliament.
The Court of Cassation rejected the appeal on July 20, prompting the CHP to appeal to a higher chamber within the court, which is expected to assess his case this week.
“This week, his appeal to stop legal proceedings should be known. We keep following the situation in Turkey,” the PES wrote in its statement.
“The rule of law is under threat in Turkey but we hope that the appeal to Berberoğlu is approved by the court this week,” it added.
The PES is a European political party which includes 34 full member parties, 12 associate and 12 observer parties in the EU and Norway. The CHP is an associate member of PES.