Telek & Others v Turkey - Academic Freedom in Turkey

Academic freedom is under attack in Turkey. The Telek & Ors v Turkey case concerns the cancellation of passports of three academics who, together with more than two thousand others, supported a “Petition for Peace” and as a result were prosecuted, dismissed from academic institutions and banned from public service under the state of emergency. Despite the state of emergency having come to an end in July 2018, they are still deprived of a valid passport and unable to travel or to engage in academic work at home or abroad. Given the dearth of effective remedies in Turkey, they have no opportunity to challenge the lawfulness of the measures taken against them.

An intervention submitted today on behalf of the Turkey Litigation Support Project, Amnesty International, ARTICLE 19 and PEN International urges the Court to apply the convention in light of relevant international standards on academic freedom and on the fundamental nature of the right to remedy in situations of emergency. The brief, available here, finally presents information on the lack of legal remedies for the widespread practice of passport cancellations in Turkish courts.