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Turkey: Protection from Afar

How to Support People in Turkey and Visitors to Turkey in Cases of Persecution and Arbitrary Arrest

(02.09.2020) This booklet provides insights and advice about how to respond to cases of persecution and/or threats to the safety and security of human rights defenders. It also speaks to those issues as they apply to other nonviolent activists in Turkey and to people who are not politically organized.

Protective accompaniment from afar means providing protection without being physically present in the country. It looks at what local people can do – particularly activists or friends of the persecuted. And it looks at what international supporters can do to help them.

Available: order the printed version, download pdf-file or eBook

Ercan Aktaş

Ercan Aktaş, Turkey/France: I came to France in October 2017 and never returned

Video on YouTube channel Refuse to Kill

(15.05.2020) Hello, my name is Ercan Jan Aktaş. I am a social scientist, activist and writer. My fields of work are; violence, militarism, peace and conscientious objection. On 14th May 2005, I declared my conscientious objection together with a group of friends in Izmir. Since then I have been part of the anti-war movement. I took part in the work of a group of war resisters, the Conscientious Objection for Peace Platform and the Conscientious Objection Association. I have also written the activist work I have been part in newspapers and websites that I am an author of, and I’m continuing to do so. In May 2016, the police stormed my house where I was living with my family following a ‘social media’ operation in relation to my activist work in Turkey: Subsequently, 3 lawsuits were filed against me due to my work I was carrying out with my friends as an anti-war activist, anti-militarist and conscientious objector.

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+90 and DW Turkey: Being a Conscientious Objector

Video on YouTube channel Refuse to Kill

(01.05.2020) Extract of a video made by Deutsche Welle Turkey and +90 which describes the situation of conscientious objectors in Turkey. We thank for the permission to use these extracts.

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Kamiljan Ergashov. Photo: Jehovahs Witnesses

Turkmenistan: First 2020 conscientious objector jailing

(27.01.2020) On 13 January, a court in Dashoguz Region of northern Turkmenistan jailed 18-year-old Jehovah’s Witness conscientious objector Kamiljan Ergashov for two years for refusing compulsory military service on grounds of conscience. This is the first known conviction and jailing of a conscientious objector so far in 2020. It is the 20th known such conviction since January 2018.

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