Cape Law Society expresses concern with wide spread arrests and detention of judges and lawyers in Turkey

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;
• more than 4400 judges and prosecutors have been investigated with over 2400 held in pre-trial detention;
• legal professionals have been subjected to ill-treatment, torture and excessive solitary confinement; and
• state officials have been granted immunity for acts of ill-treatment and torture committed during their scope of duties under state of emergency decrees.

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.

Issued by:

Mr Lulama Lobi, President of The Cape Law Society on behalf of the Council of The Cape Law Society
The Cape Law Society
Tel: (021) 443 6700 │ Fax: (021) 443 6751/2│
Email: │ Website: