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IPPNW supports WMA condemnation of the arrest of Turkish Medical Association leaders

February 6, 2018

Since issuing the following statement on February 2, 2018, IPPNW has learned that the Turkish government has released the members of the Turkish Medical Association who were arrested last week. 

International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) joins the World Medical Association in expressing grave concern over the arrests of leaders of the Turkish Medical Association (TMA).

We concur with the statement of WMA President Dr. Yoshitake Yokokura, who said, in part, “The WMA fully supports our Turkish colleagues in their public statements that war is a public health problem. The WMA has clear policy that physicians and national medical associations should alert governments to the human consequence of warfare and armed conflicts.”

IPPNW agrees that the threats of physical violence and the criminal complaint that has been made against the TMA violate the rights of free expression as enshrined in article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and prevents these honorable physicians from performing the professional medical duties they are ethically required to uphold.

We join the WMA in calling on Turkish authorities to immediately release the physician leaders and end the campaign of intimidation and in asking all of our medical colleagues around the world to “advocate for the full respect of Turkey’s humanitarian and human rights obligations, including the right to health, freedom of association and expression.”

Daniel Bassey, MD, Nigeria

Ira Helfand, MD, United States

Arun Mitra, MD, India

Tilman Ruff, MD, Australia


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