February 20, 2017

NASA Scientist Still Held in Turkey for Alleged Coup Involvement

Serkan Golge from his LinkedIn profile.

Serkan Golge, a 36-year-old physicist and research scientist at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States, has been detained in Turkey since August of last year, and charged with involvement with the Gülen movement and the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

No credible evidence has been presented to back up these charges. In the absence of evidence, Mr. Golge’s detention is both arbitrary and illegal, and, even under the current “State of Emergency”, is a violation of Turkey’s international and European human rights commitments, as well as the rights guaranteed by the Turkish Constitution.

January 11, 2017

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
President of Turkey
Office of the President
06573 Basbakanlik
Ankara, Turkey
Fax: +90 312 417 04 76
E-mail: contact@tccb.gov.tr

Dear President Erdoğan,

The Committee of Concerned Scientists is an independent organization of scientists, physicians, engineers and scholars devoted to the protection and advancement of human rights and scientific freedom for colleagues all over the world.

We write to express our continuing concern for Serkan Golge, a 36-year-old physicist and research scientist at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States. He has been detained since August of last year, and charged with involvement with the Gülen movement and the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

No credible evidence has been presented to back up these charges, and in October we joined with Endangered Scholars Worldwide to call for Serkan Golge’s immediate and unconditional release, which we strongly reiterate now. In the absence of any evidence, Mr. Golge’s detention is both arbitrary and illegal, and, even under the current “State of Emergency”, is a violation of Turkey’s international and European human rights commitments, as well as the rights guaranteed by the Turkish Constitution.

We also remain concerned that, as of October, Mr. Golge, who is also a citizen of the United States, has not been allowed a visit from U.S. consular representatives, and that he has been subjected to extended periods of solitary confinement, putting him at risk of torture or ill-treatment.

We once again urge you to review this case and bring about the release of Serkan Golge as quickly as possible.

Sincerely,

Joel L. Lebowitz, Paul H. Plotz, Walter Reich,
Eugene M. Chudnovsky, Alexander Greer

Co-Chairs, Committee of Concerned Scientists

Copies to:

The Honorable Joseph R. Biden
Vice President of the United States of America
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20500John Kerry
United States Secretary of State
Office of Foreign Missions
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520
Email: OFMInfo@state.gov

Ambassador John Bass
U.S. Embassy Ankara
110 Atatürk Blvd.
Kavaklıdere, 06100 Ankara – Turkey
Phone: (90-312) 455-5555
Fax: (90-312) 467-0019
@USEmbassyTurkey

Ambassador Serdar Kılıç
Embassy of the Republic of Turkey
2525 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: 1 202 612 6700/1
Fax: 1 202 612 6744
Email: embassy.washingtondc@mfa.gov.trMinister of Justice
Mr. Bekir Bozdağ
Ministry of Justice
Adalet Bakanlığı
06659 Ankara, Turkey
Fax: +90 312 417 71 13