Amnesty International: The crackdown on dissent in Turkey continued in 2019

Amnesty International: The crackdown on dissent in Turkey continued in 2019

The crackdown on real or perceived dissent continued in 2019, despite the end of the two-year-long state of emergency in July 2018. Thousands of people were held in lengthy and punitive pre-trial detention, often without any credible evidence of their having committed any crime recognizable under international law. There were severe restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly and people considered critical of the current government – in particular journalists, political activists and human rights defenders – were detained or faced trumped-up criminal charges. The authorities continued to arbitrarily ban demonstrations and use unnecessary and excessive force to disperse peaceful protestors. There were credible reports of torture and enforced disappearances. Turkey forcibly returned Syrian refugees, while continuing to host more refugees than any other country.