15 organisations call for the release of women detained on 22 May

Solidarity with the women politicians and activists imprisoned in Amed (Diyarbakır) last week is growing.

15 organizations, including IHD, THIV, TMMOB, ÖHD, DİSK and KESK, condemned the Amed-based operations targeting Rosa Women’s Association on 22 May.

In a written statement the 15 organisations said that this was not a criminal investigation, but an investigation to silence and suppress civil society.

The joint statement said: “Within the scope of the investigation launched by the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor's Office, 18 people, mostly women rights defenders and politicians, were detained. The president and other members of the Rosa Women's Association, with whom we work on issues such as violence against women and other rights violations, were detained on the eve of the Ramadan holiday and subsequently remanded in custody. As part of the same operations HDP party council members and city council members were also sent to prison.”

The statement continued: “The rallies held by the Rosa Women's Association, as well as its press releases, social media posts, and the activities carried out about women who have been violated have been used to fabricate the charges. The "evidence" used to launch the investigation and justify the arrests is actually the very activity carried out by the organised civil society. This not a criminal investigation but an investigation aimed at silencing and suppressing civil society.”

The statement recalled that the president and executives of the Rosa Women's Association have been arrested and the three and a half year old child of one of the arrested women had to go to prison with her.

The 15 organisations condemned “these investigations, which criminalize civil society activities and politics. We demand that those arrested be released immediately.”

The signatories are as follows:

Human Rights Association (İHD) Diyarbakır Branch

Diyarbakır Bar Association

Diyarbakır Chamber of Medicine

Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (TIHV) Diyarbakır Representative

Rights Initiative Diyarbakır Representative Office

Rosa Women's Association

Lawyers Association for Freedom (ÖHD) Diyarbakır Branch

Women's Status of Solidarity

Turkey Union of Chambers of Engineers and Architects (Chamber) Amed ICC

Amed KESK (Confederation of Public Workers Unions) Branches Platform

Revolutionary Workers Union Confederation (DİSK) Diyarbakır Regional Representation

Mesopotamian Psychologists Initiative (DER-MEZ)

Social Workers Association (SHUDER) Diyarbakır Branch

Diyarbakır Chamber of Dentists

Colorful Hopes Association