The US State Department has expressed “grave concern and disappointment” over the conviction of prominent Turkish activist Osman Kavala by a Turkish court, calling his life sentence on controversial charges “unfair”.
US State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement: “The United States is deeply concerned and disappointed by the court’s decision to convict Osman Kavala,” who has been jailed without trial for more than four years, according to the AFP.
Price also added that “the unjust sentence handed down against him is incompatible with respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law”.
Washington also called for the release of Kavala and “all those arbitrarily detained” in Turkey.
strained relations with the West
Interestingly, Kavala, 64, a prominent figure in Turkish civil society, was accused of funding protests against the government of then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in light of the large-scale protests in 2013, as well as participating in the attempt. coup d’etat of 2016.
The Kavala case has strained relations between Ankara and Western countries, and an Istanbul court ruling on Monday sparked swift condemnation from some of Turkey’s key NATO allies.
The way in Kavala was treated to prompted the Council of Europe to enact rare disciplinary measures that could lead to Turkey’s suspension from the continent’s largest human rights group.
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