Conscientious Objection 

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Committee of Ministers of the European Council urges Turkey to recognize the right of conscientious objection

(13.06.2024) The Committee of Ministers DEEPLY REGRETTED that three of the applicants in these cases (Osman Murat Ülke, Yunus Erçep and Ersin Ölgün) are still considered draft evaders and continue to face the threat of criminal and administrative proceedings. STRONGLY URGED the authorities therefore to take without further delay all necessary measures to put an end to the violation of the applicants’ rights.

Conscientious Objector Kemal Soylu. Photo: Conscientious Objection Watch.

Conscientious Objectors Share Their Stories

Part II: Kemal Soylu

(11.06.2024) This is Merve Arkun from the Conscientious Objection Watch, Turkey. We are happy to share with you the second video of the series of interviews we started to share the stories of conscientious objectors from Turkey, the first video of which we published on the International Day of Conscientious Objection. In the second interview of the interview series, we share the experiences of conscientious objector Kemal Soylu.

Merve Arkun: "We are often stopped by armed police." Photo: Rena Effendi/The Guardian

"You can’t fight your way to peace"

From a 20 y/o Israeli to a 99 y/o Briton, eight conscientious objectors on why they refused to serve in the army

(08.06.2024) Military service for 18-year-olds is a key Tory election pledge in the UK. But in countries with conscription, opting out comes at a heavy cost – ostracisation, fines and time in prison. With Peter Hathorn (South Africa), Einat Gerlitz (Israel), Merve Arkun (Turkey), Netiwit Chotiphatphaisal (Thailand), Bill Galvin (USA), Oleg Sofyanik (Ukraine), Mikita Sviryd (Belarus/Lithuania) and Timothy Tyndall (UK).

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EBCO, WRI, IFOR & Connection e.V.

Third (!) imprisonment of Turkish-Cypriot reservist conscientious objector Halil Karapaşaoğlu totally unacceptable

Joint Press Release

(05.06.2024) The European Bureau for Conscientious Objection (EBCO), War Resisters’ International (WRI), the International Fellowship of Reconciliation (IFOR), and Connection e.V. strongly condemn the third (!) imprisonment of Turkish-Cypriot reservist conscientious objector Halil Karapaşaoğlu, and call on the authorities in the "TRNC" to urgently amend the Military Service Act so as to recognise the right of conscientious objection to military service, and to implement the Murat Kanatlı v Türkiye judgement of the European Court of Human Rights.