Former Amnesty Turkish chair Taner Kılıç risks reimprisonment if sentence upheld by top appeals court

Turkish authorities will reimprison former Amnesty International Turkey chair Taner Kılıç if the top appeals court dismisses his appeal and upholds the six-year prison sentence handed down in the Büyükada case.

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Ex-Amnesty International Turkey chair Taner Kılıç will be rejailed if the Court of Cassation upholds his 2020 conviction, Amnesty Turkey said.

On July 3, 2020, Kılıç, now Amnesty’s honorary chair, was sentenced to six years and three months for “membership of a terrorist organization” in a case widely known as the Büyükada trial.

Kılıç, was released on bail in August 2018 after 14 months in jail.

Following his conviction in 2020, the case was taken to the Court of Cassation, Turkey's top appeals court.

The chief public prosecutor at the Court of Cassation demanded that Kılıç's appeal be rejected and the sentence be finalized. If the judges comply with the prosecutor's decision, Kılıç will be sent back to jail to serve the remaining of his sentence.

Kılıç on May 4 held an interview with Agnes Callamard, the new secretary-general of Amnesty International, saying that the human rights organization had always stood by him since the moment he was detained.

“Seeing Amnesty International standing by me with its all resources, members and supporters gives me a serious morale and power,” Kılıç said.

In her remarks, Callamard said: “I am prepared to do everything I can over the next months or year, to be your side. And trust me that when I stand by your side, there will be 10 million Amnesty members standing by your side. You are one of us Taner, and when one of us is attacked, all of us stand up.”