Businessman jailed in Turkey hopes justice will prevail sooner or later

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Member of the International Peace and Reconciliation Initiative (IPRI) delegation to Turkey Osman Kavala is seen during a joint press conference with Chair of the Confederal Group of the European United Left - Nordic Green Left at the European Parliament Gabriele Zimmer, Chair of IPRI Judge Essa Moosa, French politician Francis Wurtz and Chair of the EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC) Kariane Westrheim after 11th International Conference on "the European Union, Turkey, the Middle East and the Kurds" at European Parliament headquarters in Brussels, Belgium on December 11, 2014. (Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency)

Osman Kavala, one of Turkey’s most prominent businessmen and civil society activists, has voiced the hope that “justice will prevail sooner or later” in comments on his recent arrest in Turkey.

Releasing a statement through his lawyers, Kavala acknowledged messages of support from the country and abroad.

“Messages of support coming from around the world and across Turkey are very precious to me. I want to send my compliments to everyone. I also thank political actors who stood by me from the beginning of the process and conveyed their good wishes. I do not find it right to make a comment due to the confidentiality order on the investigation. I hope that justice will prevail sooner or later,” Kavala said in his message.

Detained upon his arrival at İstanbul Atatürk Airport on Oct. 18, Kavala is accused of attempting to abolish the constitutional order and attempting to overthrow the government of the Turkish Republic, according to local reports.

The media also said Kavala has been under investigation in the same probe that led to the Oct. 4 arrest of US Consulate General employee Metin Topuz on charges of ties to the Gulen movement.

The Turkish government accuses the movement of masterminding a July 15, 2016 coup attempt, an allegation strongly denied by the movement.

In the meantime, a website has been set up for Kavala, who was put in pretrial detention on Nov. 1 after spending two weeks in police custody.

The website — osmankavala.org — contains reports that have appeared in various Turkish media outlets and some social projects carried out by Kavala and civil society organizations established by him across Turkey.

An announcement that appears on the homepage of the website calls on Turkish authorities to free the businessman, saying that all the accusations leveled at Kavala are baseless and a clear indication of violation of the principles of a state of law.

Kavala was born in 1957 in Paris and studied economics at the University of Manchester. Upon his father’s passing in 1982, he took over management of the Kavala Group.

He was active in the establishment of a number of business organizations in Turkey, including the Turkish-Polish and Turkish-Greek business councils and the Association of Tourism Investors. He also serves as chairman of the İstanbul-based Anadolu Kültür Association. (Turkey Purge)

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