ALLEA rejects the attempted coup d’état and calls for the Republic of Turkey to respect academic freedom and autonomy

ALLEA, the European Federation of Academies of Sciences and Humanities, rejects all non-constitutional and violent attempts to threaten the democracies in the Council of Europe region, which is the host region to the ALLEA member academies, and indeed all over the world. Consequently, ALLEA strongly condemns the attempted coup d’état by factions of the Turkish military on 15 July 2016 against the democratically elected institutions of the Republic of Turkey.

In the meantime ALLEA has closely followed the subsequent and on-going developments and is alarmed by the repressive and excessive nature of recent measures against several public sectors in Turkey, including the academic and research community, carried out by the Turkish government and compliant civil servants in response to the coup.

In particular, we learnt with grave concern and alarm that apparently all 1577 university deans were suspended, thousands of licenses of teachers cancelled, all academics banned from leaving Turkey, and Turkish academics were being called back from abroad.

We strongly condemn these and any other punitive or preventive actions taken without distinction, depriving academics and researchers from their fundamental rights, particularly the right to freedom of expression, freedom of movement, freedom of assembly as well as the right to exercise their profession without politically or ideologically motivated constraints.

We urge the Turkish Government to halt these measures and to return to, respect and safeguard the principles of academic freedom and autonomy for both individuals and institutions in the science and higher education sectors in Turkey.

We stand in solidarity with our Turkish colleagues in these difficult times and we particularly support the academicians and staff in our member academies located in Ankara and Istanbul.

We call upon the European Institutions, national Governments as well as fellow scientists and scholars across Europe and beyond to express their support for the academic and research community in Turkey.

Click here for pdf version of the statement