PES Foreign Policy Network condemns injustices in Turkey and discusses institutional racism in US and Europe


Maria Reyes Maroto Illera

Members of the PES Foreign Policy Network meeting by videoconference

Justice must win out in the USA and Turkey, foreign affairs spokespersons, MEPs, MPs and key representatives from the progressive political family said today as they convened to discuss foreign policy.

Meeting by videoconference, socialists and democrats expressed their support for those exercising their democratic rights to peacefully protest against racism and police violence in the USA, and expressed deep concern about the new wave of repression against opposition forces in Turkey.

Chair of the network, and PvdA Member of the European Parliament, Kati Piri said:

“Our political family is closely monitoring the developments in the USA. We support the broad and diverse group of protesters, who are simply seeking justice and to change an unfair system. And we condemn President Trump, who is determined to pour oil on the situation and widen divisions, much to the praise of nationalists and white supremacists.

“There is a clear systemic racism in the US, deeply rooted in society and institutions. But we must also not forget to look at our own institutionalised forms of racism in Europe. It is time for real change for the African-American community and other discriminated against groups, both in the US and Europe.”

On Turkey, Piri said:

“We are very concerned to see the fundamental rights situation in Turkey further declining. The erosion of democracy is getting worse and worse. President Erdogan’s judiciary continues to remove legitimately elected mayors in the South-East of the country, three MPs have been stripped of their parliamentary seat, Osman Kavala remains in jail for almost 1000 days by now and CHP’s Istanbul chair Canan Kaftancioglu has been sentenced to more than 9 years jail for her tweets. We stand against these abuses of power and with the democratic opposition."

Alongside the situation in the USA and Turkey, the meeting also discussed developments in Libya and their consequences for the migration routes in the central Mediterranean.

The PES has already expressed its solidarity with protesters in the USA, and continues to speak out against the anti-democratic tactics of President Erdoğan in Turkey.