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Turkey summons envoys of 10 countries over remarks on Turkish businessman

Osman Kavala, Turkish businessman [Twitter]
Osman Kavala, Turkish businessman [Twitter]

Turkey summoned the ambassadors of 10 countries over a statement calling the businessman, Osman Kavala's release from jail, Anadolu News Agency reports.

According to the report, Turkey summoned the ambassadors of the US, Germany, Denmark, Finland, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Canada, Norway and New Zealand in Ankara.

Foreign ministry officials emphasised to the ambassadors that Turkey is a "democratic state of law that respects human rights and reminded them that the Turkish judiciary will not be affected by such irresponsible statements," the statement said.

Turkey's parliament speaker, Mustafa Sentop, and Omer Celik, the spokesman for Turkey's Justice and Development (AK) Party, criticised the statement of embassies.

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"Statements by diplomats who work in our country, to influence the Turkish judiciary are unacceptable," Celik said, underlining that Turkey is a sovereign state of law and the Turkish judiciary is independent.

Justice Minister, Abdulhamit Gul, also said that diplomats are duty-bound to have respect for the judiciary of the country they are serving in.

"According to our Constitution, no ambassador can give advice to our courts or tell them to do anything. What casts a shadow on the rule of law is this presumption," Gul added.

Last week, a Turkish court extended the detention of Osman Kavala, whose trial on charges related to the 2013 Gezi Park protests and the 2016 coup attempt has drawn keen interest from Western governments, and could jeopardise Turkey's standing in the Council of Europe.

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