The Cape Law Society (“CLS”) has noted with concern the wide spread and systemic arbitrary arrest and detention of judges and lawyers in Turkey. Reliable reports indicate that since July 2016:
• approximately 1525 lawyers have been prosecuted, 578 have been arrested and held in pre-trial detention and 99 have been sentenced;
These gross violations of international norms and standards are a violation of the independence of the judiciary and an erosion of the rule of law in Turkey, and are of extreme concern to the legal community in South Africa. This conduct is accordingly condemned in the strongest terms possible and the government of Turkey is called upon to cease these unlawful practices with immediate effect. The CLS calls on the international community of nations to express its displeasure at such conduct and to regard such conduct of the Turkish government as a gross violation of fundamental entrenched rights in international law.
Mr Lulama Lobi, President of The Cape Law Society on behalf of the Council of The Cape Law Society