Boğaziçi University Academic Member Prof. Dr. Ayşe Buğra has issued a statement concerning arrest of her husband Osman Kavala.
Saying that the arrest decision is alarming, Buğra drew attention to accusation that “Kavala was the executive and organized of Gezi Resistance, in which all terror organizations (FETÖ/PDY [Fethullahist Terror Organization/Parallel State Organization] – PKK/KCK [Kurdistan Workers’ Party/Kurdistan Communities Union] – MLKP [Marxist Leninist Communist Party]) actively participated, and participated in July 15, 2016 coup attempt”.
Stating that reports put forward as evidence for the arrest were prepared at times when those, who are investigated as part of the FETÖ/PDY investigation, were still at their offices, Prof. Dr. Buğra said, “All verdicts based on these practices means to justify a period of investigation”.
In her statement, Buğra said:
"My spouse, Chairperson of Anadolu Kültür Osman Kavala is arrested on 1 November 2017 at 04:10 a.m. on charges of "attempting to abolish constitutional order" and "attempting to overthrow the Government of the Republic of Turkey or preventing it from undertaking its duties.
In the arrest decision it is stated that Osman Kavala was the organizer and overseer of the Gezi incidents where all terror organisations(FETÖ/PDY – PKK/KCK – DHKPC, MLKP) were involved and that he partook in the coup attempt of 15 July 2016.
There is a "sealing order" on the current investigation. Irrespective of the circumstances without compromising our respect to rule of law we leave a comprehensive explanation to time. However we felt compelled to provide a statement due to the attempted perception management carried out against Osman Kavala by certain print and visual media throughout his detention period.
The desicion is worrisome because the "reports of interception of communication and physical surveillance reports" pertain to the period when FETÖ/PDY –member public officials were still on duty and every decision that is predicated on these applications is an explicit legitimization of a period that is being prosecuted.
Moreover this also means that Osman Kavala was involved in the attempted coup along with the members of the organisation who collected the evidence which led to Kavala's arrest, which is tragicomic beyond being unlawful".
It is dubious that he is arrested today on these grounds while actions, monetary transactions and evidence on the basis of which Osman Kavala financed and orchestrated the Gezi incidents cannot be revealed, and while he has not been subjected to any investigations and charges since then.
With the arrest decision we have not only lost Osman Kavala's freedom, but also weakened our hopes for democracy, peace and the rule of law".
Anadolu Kültür Executive Board Chair, human rights advocate and businessperson Osman Kavala, was taken into custody in the evening hours on October 18 at İstanbul Atatürk Airport on his return from a meeting of a project planned to be realized in cooperation with Goethe Institute in Antep.
He was targeted by some pro-government newspapers following his detention.
Speaking at the weekly group meeting of his party, President and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had referred to Kavala as "Soros of Turkey", mentioning his name and said:
"Some try to deflect the truth by means of praises attributed to him such as 'He was a good citizen, a media member, an NGO representative'. Identity of this figure called 'Soros of Turkey' has been uncovered. That was his name that came up in Consulate General [investigation]. All connections have surfaced. And there is the same person behind the incidents in Taksim. You see those people again behind funds transfer to certain places. Who are you trying to fool?"
His detention also sparked criticism on international level.
US thinker and professor in linguistic, Noam Chomsky, United States Department of State Spokesperson Heather Nauert and European Parliament Rapporteur for Turkey Kati Piri denounced Kavala's detention and demanded that he be released immediately.
On October 31, a group of 35 academics, writers and researchers coming together under the guidance of the European Network on Political Group Analysis Jean-François Bayart, addressed an open letter to President Erdoğan for Kavala's release.
About Osman Kavala
Kavala was born in Paris in 1957. He graduated from Department of Economy at Manchester University.
He has been working as executive at Kavala Group since 1982.
He participated in foundation of Turkey's one of the most prominent publishing houses with Murat Belge, İletişim Publications.
He served as member at administrative boards of business institutions and NGOs such as Turkey-Poland Business Council, Turkey-Greece Business Council, and Center For Democracy in Southeast Europe.
Kavala is a member of Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) Administrative Board, Open Society Institute Consulting Board, and supporter of Helsinki Citizens' Assembly, History Foundation and Diyarbakır Culture House. (EKN/TK)
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