15:00 GMT23 February 2020
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    Freedom House President Mark Lagon said that the proposal by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to strip alleged terrorist sympathizers of Turkish citizenship ignores the rule of law and will result in more violence.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The proposal by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to strip alleged terrorist sympathizers of Turkish citizenship ignores the rule of law and will result in more violence, Freedom House President Mark Lagon said in a statement.

    "Turkey already suffers from overly broad and overly vague definitions of terrorism and terror propaganda that have left thousands of people subject to arbitrary justice," Lagon stated on Wednesday. "Stripping citizenship from people in a state where authorities routinely ignore the rule of law will lead to more violence."

    On Tuesday, Erdogan said in a speech that Turkey should combat terrorism by revoking citizenship of terrorist sympathizers.

    Freedom House pointed out that Turkey has not distinguished legally or politically between speech it considers to be in favor of terrorist groups from actual membership in a terrorist group.

    Erdogan has routinely accused academics, journalists, lawyers and others who are critical of the government of supporting terrorism.

    Moreover, Turkey is at odds with the United States over Washington’s cooperation with the Kurdish People’s Defense Units (YPG) in the fight against  Daesh group in Syria.

    Ankara maintains the YPG is no different than the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK), which both countries have designated as a terrorist group.


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    violence, citizenship, terrorism, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey
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