The Platform for an Independent Judiciary in Turkey urged European institutions to call on Turkey to provide guarantees and standards for de jure and de facto independence of its judges and prosecutors.
Four organisations of judges and prosecutors that form the platform expressed their solidarity for Turkish judges and prosecutors in a letter addressed to the Council of Europe and the European Commission on Monday, saying the members of the judiciary had been unlawfully and illegally detained and/or dismissed, following Turkey’s failed coup of 2016.
Marking the fifth anniversary of the failed putsch, the platform also urged the EU to call on Turkey “to carry out the European Court judgments and to review all decisions for dismissal of Turkish judges or prosecutors since 15 July 2016 and all pre-trial detention orders and criminal convictions regarding membership of an illegal organization”.
Turkey accuses Islamic cleric Fethullah Gülen, who lives in self-imposed exile in the United States, of having masterminded the coup attempt in July 2016. Ankara maintains that followers of Gülen led a long-running scheme to overthrow Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan by infiltrating Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police forces and judiciary.
Tens of thousands of civil servants, members of the judiciary and military personnel have been expelled and arrested over alleged links to the group since the attempted putsch.
Gülen denies any involvement in the coup. The United States has yet to approve a request by the Turkish government to extradite him to face trial.
The eight-page long letter has been signed by the Association of European Administrative Judges (AEAJ), Magistrats Européens pour la Democratie et les Libertés (MEDEL), the European Association of Judges (EAJ) and Judges for Judges, the four body that formed the Platform for an Independent Judiciary in Turkey.