MEPs call for impartial investigation in cross-political letter to Turkish PM
Over 50 MEPs from different political groups have co-signed a letter to Turkish Prime Minister Davutoğlu calling for a 'full and impartial investigation' of the recent Ankara bombings. The letter expresses concern for the escalation of violence in Turkey and condemns attacks on innocent civilian protestors. It also criticises the social media blackout following the bombings and media censorship. The letter calls for the Kurdish peace process to be restored and for the Turkish government to ensure the security and fairness of the forthcoming elections on 1 November. Commenting on the letter, Greens/EFA MEP Ernest Maragall, who initiated the letter as a member of the European Parliament's delegation for relations with Turkey, said:
"The political situation in Turkey is a matter of growing concern. The terrible bombings and loss of life in Ankara have shaken many people's confidence in the Turkish government's ability to maintain the peace and stability necessary for free and fair elections to take place on 1 November.
"As MEPs we are calling upon Turkey's Prime Minister to ensure a full and impartial investigation of this act of terror. We also urge Turkey to restore the Kurdish peace process and lead by example in showing respect for democracy and human rights."
Greens/EFA co-president Rebecca Harms said:
"There are real concerns that Turkey is rolling back on its previous democratic development, threatening the country and the wider region. This terrible attack must serve as a turning point. The EU also has to finally assume its responsibility and engage much more proactively with the Turkish government in order to push for a return to the peace process. This holds for German chancellor Merkel, who is set to visit Turkey, as well as all other EU leaders and representatives of the EU institutions. It is also crucial that she and other visiting leaders meet with members of the opposition and media under pressure from the government.
"The Turkish government must stop the ongoing repression and censorship of the media. Freedom of the press, freedom of expression and the right to information are basic democratic rights and should not be denied to Turkey's citizens. Clearly, against this background and with the serious instability and violence, Turkey cannot be designated by the EU as a safe country of origin."