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Call for the immediate lifting of a travel ban placed on Resit Ekinci from Recklinghausen, Germany

Written declaration No. 697 | Doc. 14993 | 08 October 2019

Mr Frank SCHWABE, Germany, SOC ; Ms Thorhildur Sunna ÆVARSDÓTTIR, Iceland, SOC ; Ms Petra BAYR, Austria, SOC ; Mr Fourat BEN CHIKHA, Belgium, SOC ; Ms Erika BENKŐ, Romania, EPP/CD ; Ms María Luisa BUSTINDUY, Spain, SOC ; Mr Boriss CILEVIČS, Latvia, SOC ; Mr Constantinos EFSTATHIOU, Cyprus, SOC ; Ms Tarja FILATOV, Finland, SOC ; Ms Ruth GOÑI, Spain, ALDE ; Ms Zita GURMAI, Hungary, SOC ; Mr Antonio GUTIÉRREZ, Spain, SOC ; Mr Domagoj HAJDUKOVIĆ, Croatia, SOC ; Ms Gabriela HEINRICH, Germany, SOC ; Mr František KOPŘIVA, Czech Republic, ALDE ; Mr Christophe LACROIX, Belgium, SOC ; Mr George PAPANDREOU, Greece, SOC ; Mr Indrek SAAR, Estonia, SOC ; Mr Jussi SARAMO, Finland, UEL ; Mr Stefan SCHENNACH, Austria, SOC ; Ms Susana SUMELZO, Spain, SOC ; Ms Violeta TOMIĆ, Slovenia, UEL ; Mr Manuel TORNARE, Switzerland, SOC ; Mr Martin WHITFIELD, United Kingdom, SOC

We, the undersigned, declare the following:

Resit Ekinci, a Turkish national living in Recklinghausen (Germany), was arrested by the Turkish authorities in Diyarbakır in July 2019 while on holiday with his family. He is accused of liking, commenting upon and sharing posts critical of Erdogan on Facebook. While not in detention anymore, Resit Ekinci now has to report to the Turkish authorities weekly and cannot leave the country. His wife and two children are back in Germany and he has lost his job there.

We urge the Turkish authorities to immediately lift the travel ban placed on Resit Ekinci, whose persecution appears to be politically motivated. By ratifying the European Convention on Human Rights, Turkey took on an obligation to ensure to everyone within its jurisdiction respect of rights and freedoms, including the right to freedom of thought under Article 9.