In solidarity with academics from Turkey for peace: For the right to demand peace at times of war, academics from all over the world defend their colleagues in Turkey.
In the Kurdish Southeast of Turkey, the prevalent conditions have become similar to those of a civil war. Military tanks target historical districts; many civilians have been injured and are dying, while thousands are fleeing. Given these circumstances, more than two thousand academics from Turkey signed a call for peace as an objection against the war in their own country.
Meanwhile, the Turkish President Erdoğan has personally declared on television that the authors and signatories of the petition were “traitors of the country”.
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“He, who eats the bread of this country, but betrays it, must be punished”. Only a few minutes later, his declaration took effect: Some Professors have been fired. The first 1128 signatories are accused of “insulting Turkishness, the Turkish republic and its institutions” and of “propaganda for terrorist organizations”; many of them already have been detained and have been forced to resign.
Very few media outlets dare to criticise as nationalist organisations continue to launch individual death threats by phone, while a well-known mafia boss wants to “shower in the blood of the traitors.” Posters with the faces of the signatories have been put on the walls of some provincial universities.
We, academics from the whole world, defend our colleagues in Turkey.
Together we defend the academic freedom, freedom of expression, and the right to demand peace at times of war.
Both, dismissals and indictments have to stop. The Turkish State is obliged to protect the signatories of the petition from threats and attacks by a third party. The governments of the European Union, which are in close contact with the Turkish government, are called upon to oblige their ally to respect the law.
We kindly request that university and academic institutions worldwide support their colleagues in Turkey, so that the signatories to the petition may continue to research and teach as well as be able to exercise their rights freely.
In keeping with the appeal “we won’t be a part of this crime”, we call on the Turkish government to provide the conditions for a peaceful resolution of the continuing war and enable negotiations.
Read the International appeal, also in other languages, on Medico International.