In early November, prominent Turkish philanthropist and civil society leader Osman Kavala was jailed based on dubious accusations of participating in Turkey’s July 2016 coup attempt. Later that month, 11 human rights activists — including the chair and director of Amnesty International Turkey — appeared in court facing 15 years’ imprisonment on terrorism charges.
In response, the European Union announced major funding cuts to the Turkish government and promised to increase direct aid to civil society organizations. But this policy fails to consider the changing nature of Turkish civil society. Often considered the last remaining bastion to resist authoritarian drift under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling AKP government, civil society in Turkey has been transformed by selective repression.… Seguir leyendo » “Turkey is getting more authoritarian. Here’s why funding nongovernmental organizations won’t help democracy”