Amnesty International's Turkey director detained

Amnesty International's Turkey director detained
2 min read
06 July, 2017
Turkish security forces have detained a number of Amnesty International activists including the country's director.
Amnesty International activists have been targeted by Turkish security [AFP]
Amnesty International's Turkey director and a number of other activists are being detained following a raid on their meeting near Istanbul on Wednesday.

Idil Eser, director of Amnesty International Turkey, was among 12 people picked up by Turkish security forces, as well as activists and trainers.

The swoop took place during a "digital security and information management workshop" on Buyukada, one of the Princes' Islands off Istanbul.

Turkish daily Hurriyet said 12 were arrested in the police raid. 

There is no immediate indication of what the rights activists have been accused of.

"We are profoundly disturbed and outraged that some of Turkey's leading human rights defenders, including the Director of Amnesty International Turkey, should have been detained so blatantly without cause," said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International's Secretary General.

He said they must be "immediately and unconditionally released". The whereabouts of those detained is currently unknown.

Amnesty International's Turkey chair, Taner Kilic, was detained a month ago on "baseless charges", accused of links to the alleged mastermind of the 15 July failed coup Fethullah Gulen.

Turkey remains under a state of emergency following the coup with thousands arrested in raids by security forces.

Amnesty said the seven other activists detained included Ilknur Ustun of the Women's Coalition, lawyer Gunal Kursun and Veli Acu of the Human Rights Agenda Association.

Two foreign trainers for the workshop - a German and a Swedish national - as well as the hotel owner, were also detained in the raid, it added.