Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said he was instructed to notify ambassadors of non-individual countries following the release of businessman and philanthropist Osman Guard.
“I have instructed the Foreign Minister (Mevlut Cavusoglu) to declare ten ambassadors as soon as possible (in connection with their demand for the release of a businessman accused of plotting a coup),” Turkish news agency Anatolia quoted Erdogan as saying.
The United States, Canada, France and Germany are among the countries that issued the statement demanding that Turkey respect the decision of the European Court of Human Rights and “ensure its speedy release.”
On Thursday, Erdogan threatened to expel the ambassadors: “Who are you? What is this? Release the guards. Are you leaving thieves, murderers and terrorists in your country? The United States, Germany, who did such a thing? They did not and will not do it.” The judiciary is independent. The judiciary is independent in your country, but it is not independent in our country? Our justice system provides the best examples of freedom. “
Turkey summoned 10 ambassadors in a joint statement on Tuesday, calling the report “irresponsible” and dismissing what it described as “attempts to put pressure on the judiciary”.
The embassies of Canada, France, Finland, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and the United States issued a joint statement marking the fourth year of the Guard.
Osman Guard has been incarcerated since 2017 without charge. He was last acquitted of charges related to the 2013 Casey Park protest. He is accused of plotting a coup in 2016 and faces new charges.