Turkish police detain academics in probe of prominent rights activist
Professors Turgut Tarhanlı and Betül Tanbay
Turkish police detained six people including two academics on Nov. 16 as part of an investigation into prominent rights activist and businessman Osman Kavala.
Kavala was detained in October last year and subsequently jailed pending trial, accused of seeking to overthrow the government as part of an investigation into the network which Ankara accuses of carrying out a 2016 failed coup.
The two academics were named as Professor Turgut Tarhanlı of Istanbul Bilgi University and Professor Betül Tanbay of Boğaziçi University. The other four detainees were staff of Kavala’s Anadolu Kültür Association, which is involved in promoting culture and rights.
In a statement marking one year since he was remanded in custody, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch renewed calls at the end of October for Kavala’s immediate and unconditional release.
No indictment outlining the precise charges against him had so far been issued by prosecutors, their statement said.