Recep Tayyip Erdan, Turkish President, stated Saturday that he had given orders to 10 foreign ambassadors calling for the release of a prisoner philanthropist.
Osman Kavala is a businessman and philanthropist who has been in prison since 2017, despite having not been convicted.
Erdogan described the statement as “impudence” and said that he had directed the ambassadors to be declared undesirable.
Erdogan stated that he had given the instructions to the foreign minister and told him, “You will immediately handle this persona non-grata declaration by these 10 ambassadors,” during a rally held in Eskisehir.
He said, “They will recognize and understand Turkey.” They will leave Turkey if they don’t understand or know Turkey.
On Tuesday, the diplomats, which include ambassadors from the Netherlands, Canada and Denmark as well as Sweden, Finland, Norway, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland, were summoned by the foreign ministry.
A diplomat is usually banned from staying in the country they have declared persona non-grata against.
Kavala (64), was acquitted of charges in connection to the nationwide protests in 2013. However, the ruling was overturned. Kavala was also charged with attempting to take power in 2016.
International observers and human right groups have repeatedly called on Kavala and Selahattin, a Kurdish politician, to be released. He has been in prison since 2016. They claim their imprisonment is political. Ankara refutes the claims and insists upon the independence of Turkish courts.
European Court of Human Rights demanded Kavala’s freedom in 2019. It said that Kavala was incarcerated to silence him, and not supported by evidence of an offence. If Kavala isn’t released, the Council of Europe will begin infringement proceedings against Turkey at November’s end.
In 2019, the U.S. ambassador to Canada, David Satterfield was appointed. On Tuesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved Jeff Flake’s nomination as his replacement.