Rights defender faces anti-terror probe for speaking out against rights abuses in Turkey

Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu

An anti-terror investigation was launched against Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu, a physician, columnist and the former head of Association for Human Rights and Solidarity for the Oppressed (Mazlum-Der), for reacting to post-coup rights abuses.

Gergerlioğlu said in a statement on Saturday that a Kocaeli prosecutor launched an investigation against him on charges of propaganda on behalf of a terrorist organization.

“My articles and social media posts about justice, peace and human rights were mentioned as to be among evidences. A statement of mine, which I delivered for the banner of an event with the theme ‘Let children not die, let mothers not cry’ and which I underlined brotherhood, peace and resolution [of the Kurdish issue], was considered to be propaganda. Also, one of my posts that recommend a Colombian-like peace process for Turkey and my participation to a TV program at the IMC TV (regardless of my speech’s content) were considered as crime (!),” the statement said.

IMC TV was earlier shut down by the government under the government’s post-coup emergency rule which also removed Gergerlioğlu from his position as a physician at Kocaeli State Hospital as well.

Gergerlioğlu has also become known for his support against post-coup victims very recently.

“…I have joined the others who face investigation over efforts for human rights and peace,” Gergerlioğlu added.

The government has detained more than 126,000 people and detained over 55,000 people since the July 15, 2016 coup attempt. Among them are many rights defenders including Amnesty International’s Turkey director İdil Eser and the office’s chairman Taner Kılıç. (turkeypurge.com)

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