04:38 GMT08 March 2021
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    According to the US Department of State spokesperson, the US is concerned over Turkey's arrests of the country's opposition members and restrictions on the use of the Internet, however, the US is not reconsidering Turkey’s membership in NATO.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States is concerned over the arrests of members of Turkey’s parliamentary opposition, including lawmakers of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), and the government imposing restrictions on the use of the Internet, US Department of State spokesperson John Kirby said in a briefing on Friday.

    "The United States is deeply concerned by the Turkish government detentions of opposition members of parliament, including the co-chairs of HDP, and by government restrictions on Internet today," Kirby stated.

    According to Kirby, US Deputy Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has raised concerns with Turkey’s Under Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs over Ankara detaining opposition members of parliament and imposing internet restrictions.

    "He [Blinken] made clear that when democracies pursue legal action against elected representatives, they must do so in a manner that reinforces the public’s confidence in a rule of law, and that restricting the internet undermines confidence in Turkey’s democracy and economic prosperity." Kirby said.

    However, the US is not reconsidering Turkey’s membership in NATO despite concerns over the arrests of opposition politicians and restrictions on press freedom, Kirby added.

    "We don’t judge this just based on the fact that they’re a NATO ally," Kirby told reporters. "Obviously, we care about the health of Turkey’s democracy… but we’re not pinning this to their membership in the alliance."

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    Tags:
    democracy, internet, opposition, NATO, John Kirby, Turkey, US
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