European rights watchdog calls for end to Turkey's state of emergency

Turkey should begin to repeal some of the steps it has taken under the state of emergency declared after a failed coup in July, the human rights commissioner for the Council of Europe said in a report released Friday.

"Deviations from the rule of law and human rights principles may expedite the punishment of the guilty, and the commissioner understands the temptation for doing so," the report said.

"But such an approach will leave indelible scars and be immensely detrimental in the long run."

Some 31,844 people were being held in detention and 1,477 in police custody during commissioner Nils Muiznieks' visit to Turkey in September. He also estimated the number of civil servants dismissed or suspended since the coup attempt to be between 70,000 to 110,000 people, including 3,400 judges and prosecutors.

Additionally, more than a thousand non-governmental organizations and trade unions, as well as a hundred media organizations, have been dissolved.

Muiznieks said it was urgent for Turkey to restore elements of criminal proceedings, including access to lawyers. He also called on the Turkish authorities to authorize the publication of a report by the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture, but stopped short of backing allegations of torture.

Last update: Fri, 07/10/2016 - 10:29

More from Europe

Mattarella looking to usher in functioning Italian government quickly

Following crisis talks in Rome on Saturday, Italian President Sergio Mattarella said he will be taking steps soon to...

Austria to veto further EU accession talks with Turkey

Austria will block the continuation of EU talks with Ankara over Turkey's future membership in the bloc, Austrian...

Diplomats call for ceasefire in Aleppo at Paris meet

Foreign ministry officials from the West and the Middle East meeting in Paris Saturday for talks on Syria have...

French government seeks to extend state of emergency to July 2017

The French government said Saturday it would ask parliament to approve an extension to the country's state of...

No agreement reached between Russia, Ukraine on gas deliveries

Russian and Ukrainian officials failed to reach an agreement on gas deliveries this winter in a first round of EU-...