Open letter of protest to the president of Turkey

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To: The President of Turkey
H.E. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Through: Mr Jimmy D. Boussaid
Honorary Consul

Excellency,

The signatory Human Rights organization, The Foundation 8 December 1982 (Stichting 8 December 1982), is protesting against the involvement of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey in attempts to promote impunity for murder. The Foundation 8 December 1982 has the special aim to serve the interests of the victims and survivors of the murders of 8 December 1982 a.i. an undisturbed and correct judicial process and justice.

During his recent official visit to the Republic of Suriname, H.E. Mr Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, laid a wreath at the National Reconciliation Monument, a monument that in the eyes of a majority of Surinamese, stands for impunity of those who are guilty of murdering many Surinamese. By doing so the minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey became complicit in the suffering of the survivors and victims and the undermining of the judicial process which has entered its last phase.

In our experience it is first of all not customary to have foreign dignitaries lay wreaths at national monuments that have no international meaning, during official visits. Most importantly we are convinced that this is umpteenth attempt, by the Surinamese President who himself is the prime suspect in the 8 December 1982 murder trial, to create the idea in the Surinamese and international community that there is international acceptance of impunity for human rights violations.

We are also of the opinion that the Turkish minister of Foreign Affairs should have been better informed than involving himself with a group of persons, amongst which the main perpetrator already has a requested jail sentence of 20 years. This action is truly not a positive promotion for the minister himself, as it is not for the country he represents, Turkey.

Participation in the above mentioned activities by the minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey here in Suriname, as happened in this case, could regretfully be interpreted as if Turkey supports impunity and approves of human rights violations.

As a Human Rights organization we will keep up the fight against human rights violations and for our universal rights and freedoms. We urgently call upon the Turkish government as well as on You, President of Turkey to:

1. Not to create or formalize any complicity nor interference in the propagating/promoting of impunity as a norm for judicial processes and/or human rights violations in Suriname

Sincerely,
Mr Sunil Oemrawsingh
Chair Foundation 8 December 1982

The Foundation 8 December 1982 was founded on 6 May 2009 with the general purpose to fight against human rights violations and stand for the enjoyment of our universal rights and freedoms. The specific and most important purpose of the foundation is to make sure that justice is served in the case of the murders of 8 December 1982 of 15 prominent citizens, fighters for freedom and democracy, by the military regime under leadership of Desire Bouterse.

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