Monitors urge Turkey to lift state of emergency

“The impressive turnout in the early presidential and parliamentary elections held on 24 June 2018 in Turkey (88 per cent) and the diversity of parties in parliament are clear signs of the Turkish people’s attachment to pluralistic democracy. Such a pluralist democracy must be firmly anchored in the unrestricted exercise of fundamental freedoms, full respect for the rule of law and inclusive policies. We therefore believe it is high time the Turkish authorities, as a first step, lift the state of emergency and live up to promises and calls made during the election campaign,” said the co-rapporteurs of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) for the monitoring of Turkey Marianne Mikko (Estonia, SOC) and Nigel Evans (United Kingdom, EC).

“The ad hoc committee of the Parliamentary Assembly that observed the elections will soon present its assessment of the election campaign and voting day. As co-rapporteurs, we continue to stand ready to engage in a genuine dialogue with the Turkish authorities to address the challenges posed by the new presidential system, as highlighted by the Venice Commission, and other crucial pending issues. These include the independence of the media and the judiciary, as well as the immediate release of – among others – politicians, journalists, and human rights defenders in pre-trial detention, including the former HDP candidate to the presidential elections Mr Demirtas.”

On 26 June 2018 the Monitoring Committee released an information note prepared by the rapporteurs following their visit to Istanbul and Ankara on 28-30 March 2018.