March 24, 2021
Speaker of the Assembly
Turkiye Buyuk Millet Meclisi
Republic of Turkey
Phone: + 90 312 420 50 00
Dear Speaker Sentop:
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 academic freedom for colleagues all over the world.
We write to express our concern over the recent developments and actions taken against Dr. Omer Gergerliogu who is a prominent physician and Member of Parliament (MP).
On March 17, 2021, the Turkish Parliament stripped Dr. Gergerliogu of his MP status and related protections over an earlier conviction for spreading “terrorist propaganda” by sharing a news story link on Twitter. He was also detained by police officers and forcefully removed from the Parliament building.
We are concerned that the arrest of Dr. Omer Gergerliogu was, in reality, in retaliation for his advocacy against human rights violations in Turkey, and is part of a recurring pattern of arresting dissidents of the ruling party (AKP).
Turkey is a signatory of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which protects freedom of speech and thought (Article 19). Article 25 also protects the right to representation and to hold public office. We write to urge Turkey to recognize its international commitments and reconsider Dr. Gergerliogu’s dismissal, as well as all other actions taken to silence prominent human rights advocates, which we believe are damaging Turkish democracy.
Thank you for your attention to this serious matter. We will be closely following developments in this case.
Joel L. Lebowitz, Paul H. Plotz, Walter Reich, Eugene M. Chudnovsky, Alexander Greer
Co-Chairs, Committee of Concerned Scientists
Ambassador Serdar Kiliç
Embassy of the Republic of Turkey
2525 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: 1 (202) 612-6700 or (202) 612-6701
Fax: 1 (202) 612-6744
Members of the Supreme Court
Ahlatlıbel Mahallesi İncek Şehit Savcı
Mehmet Selim Kiraz Bulvarı No.4
Posta Kodu 06805
Çankaya / ANKARA
Phone: + 90 312 463 73 00
Fax: + 90 312 463 74 00