JWF will Keep Standing for Democracy and Human Rights

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We, as the Journalists and Writers Foundation, affirm and underline, that we will keep raising up our voice through our events and projects to advocate human rights, to strengthen democracy and rule of law, and to contribute to sustainable development, striving for a life with human dignity and freedom.

The Government’s purging of personnel and institutions of what it perceives as being dissenting and critical voices, solely on the basis of allegations of membership in the GUlen movement, clearly violates standards of international human rights law.

David Kaye – The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to freedom of opinion and expression

Turkey thwarted a military coup on July 15, 2016. The leadership of AKP government rushed in within minutes to associate the coup attempt with the Hizmet Movement and its prominent figure Fethullah Gulen. This accusation is outright opposite of what The Movement stands for and unacceptable even for the wildest of imagination. For any objective observer, this grave accusation was either made without any serious investigation or the government was ready to blame it on The Movement as if it was already planned. The declared state of emergency unfortunately is a witch-hunt towards each and every institution and individual who is not in line with the leadership of AKP.

Like any proponent of democracy, we, The Journalists and Writers Foundation (JWF) along with the supporters of Hizmet Movement in general, want to see the perpetrators of this evil coup attempt prosecuted. Nevertheless, purging thousands of civil servants and academics without any kind of trial, putting travel ban on them, punishing active members of civil society and people of charity, and above all, sowing the seeds of hatred in the society through a monopoly of media has absolutely nothing to offer in the fight against the coup. Moreover, it constitutes a strict violation of basic human rights.

Exploiting the state of emergency, AKP government shutdown 934 schools, 1125 associations and 104 foundations including The Journalists and Writers Foundation (JWF); again without any trial. The hate speech voiced by Mr. Erdogan threatens the volunteers of Hizmet Movement and violates their basic human rights encroaching upon the right to life.

No one can be convicted of an offense except on the basis of individual criminal responsibility. This basic principle of law is being completely ignored. There is no kind of any substantial evidence that allegedly connects the institutions shut down with the coup attempt. Holding the General Consultative Status to UN´s ECOSOC, our only “sin“ sums up to having Mr. Fethullah Gulen as Honorary Chairman and to be inspired by his ideas of peaceful coexistence and mutual acceptance. At this point, one can´t help but ask: Since when it is a crime to be working for a better, pluralist, democratic, diverse and peaceful world, just because of being critical towards the ruling power in a country?

Nonetheless, we want to announce that we will continue our work for a more peaceful world with our Headquarters in New York and our representations in Geneva, Vienna and Nairobi. We want to thank our friends and partners for their great support during these difficult times and underline one more time the fact, that we will keep standing for the same principles for which we stood since our establishment:

For Human Dignity. For Freedom. For Human Rights. For Democracy. For the Rule of Law

Towards universal peace.