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Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein urges Turkey to uphold rule of law in response to attempted coup

20 July 2016

On 19 July, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein called on the Turkish authorities to respond to the attempted military coup on 15 July by reinforcing the protection of human rights and strengthening democratic institutions and checks and balances.

"The Turkish people bravely took to the streets to defend their country against those who sought to undermine its democracy. I urge the Government of Turkey to respond by upholding the rule of law, by strengthening the protection of human rights and by reinforcing democratic institutions", said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein.

"In the aftermath of such a traumatic experience, it is particularly crucial to ensure that human rights are not squandered in the name of security and in the rush to punish those perceived to be responsible", he added.

The representatives of the Office of the High Commissioner expressed deep concern that a large number of judges and prosecutors were swiftly suspended on 16 July and that detention orders were issued against many. The suspensions were particularly worrying given concerns about judicial independence in Turkey, he said.

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