Dear Prime Minister,
Please allow me to express my concern about Halil Savda, a human rights defender and conscientious objector who is at ongoing risk of imprisonment for freely expressing his support for conscientious objectors.
He has been arrested several times since 2004 for refusing to perform military service. He spent around 17 months in total in detention. He stated that he was ill-treated while detained in 2007. He currently faces three seperate charges under Article 318 of the Turkish Penal Code, which criminalizes “alienating the public from military service”. He may be imprisoned at any time for 100 days.
I call on you to ensure that Halil Savda is free to continue publishing articles and making public speeches in support of conscientious objectors without fear of prosecution or intimidation.
I urge you to immediately stop prosecutions of conscientious objectors and introduce an alternative civilian service, in line with European and international standards.
I am confident of your good will and sense of justice.