European Union Foreign Affairs chief Federica Mogherini during a visit to Ankara on Thursday called on Turkey to release jailed Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş in line with a judgment issued by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) earlier in the week.
“Turkey should follow the ECHR ruling,” Mogherini said at a joint press conference with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said earlier that Turkey is not bound by ECtHR verdicts even though Turkey is party to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
“There are no double standards here. We have high standards, whether you like it or not,” Mogherini added after stating concerns about the detention of academics in the country last week.
Similarly, Hahn also said the EU has strong concerns over the imprisonment of a large number of journalists and academics in Turkey.
Turkey is the largest jailer of journalists in the world according to global media advocacy organizations such as the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).
As part of the country’s relentless purge following a coup attempt on July 15, 2016, thousands of academics have been dismissed on accusations of “terrorism” and “coup involvement.”