Ten Turkish human rights activists who were detained by police while attending a training workshop appeared before court officials in Istanbul on Monday to face possible charges or be released from custody.
The activists, including Amnesty International’s Turkey director Idil Eser, were detained earlier this month at a hotel on Buyukada island off Istanbul and questioned by anti-terrorism police.
Amnesty said the group was being investigated for membership in an armed terrorist organization. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has made vague accusations against the 10, saying they were holding a meeting that had the “nature of a continuation” of last year’s failed coup attempt.
Amnesty has called for their release and said their case is a test for Turkey’s judiciary.
“Turkey will be disgraced in the eyes of world if these human rights defenders are put in prison for defending human rights,” Andrew Gardner, Amnesty’s Turkey researcher, told a group of reporters outside the courthouse.
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