Academics linked to jailed activist detained in Turkey

Academics linked to jailed activist detained in Turkey

PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkish police on Friday, November 16 detained over a dozen people including academics from two Istanbul universities linked with an association led by imprisoned human rights activist Osman Kavala, a state-run news agency reported, according to France 24.

Kavala was arrested on October 18, 2017, before being remanded in custody on November 1.

Kavala's Anadolu Kultur NGO which aims to overcome differences within Turkish society through culture and the arts has sought to reach out to neighbouring Armenia.

Ankara has no diplomatic relations with Armenia.

Police issued arrest warrants for 20 people as part of an investigation into Anadolu Kultur (Anatolian Culture) whose chairman Kavala has been jailed for more than a year but not formally charged, Anadolu news agency said.

Twelve had been rounded up so far in simultaneous raids at several addresses early Friday, it added.

Professor Betul Tanbay of the prestigious Bogazici University and Professor Turgut Tarhanli, deputy dean of the private Bilgi University, were among the detainees.

The academics were linked to Anadolu Kultur.

The operation also targeted Anadolu Kultur executives including deputy chairman Yigit Ekmekci, as well as board member Ali Hakan Altinay, coordinator Asena Gunal and consultants Cigdem Mater and Meltem Aslan, the agency said.

It was not immediately clear what charges the detainees face.

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