The dismissal of the central council members of the Turkish Medical Association (TTB) is tantamount to usurping the will of health professionals, said Turkey’s pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples’ Equality and Democracy Party (HEDEP), describing the decision as a new coup staged by the government through the judiciary, following the pattern of trustee takeovers.
The court ruling ordering the removal of Şebnem Korur Fincancı, the head of the TTB, along with other members of the central board, follows Fincancı’s call in 2022 for an investigation into the alleged use of chemical weapons by Turkish forces against Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq.
The decision is seen as part of a pattern of alleged judicial-government collaboration.
Various political figures have condemned the dismissal of the TTB administration. The leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), Özgür Özel, condemned the decision, describing it as a violation of the law. Özel reiterated the party’s commitment to defending the rule of law and standing by the elected bodies of the TTB.
Arzu Çerkezoğlu, the president of the Progressive Trade Union Federation (DİSK), expressed his support for justice, health rights and the TTB and condemned the dismissal as a violation of the law. Emin Koramaz, president of the Union of Chambers of Engineers and Architects of Turkey (TMMOB), rejected the “illegal decision” to dismiss the TTB Central Council and emphasised its wider implications for the country’s democratic foundations.
HEDEP co-chair Tuncer Bakırhan accused the government of undermining the country’s struggle for democracy and justice by targeting the TTB, a prominent advocate of health rights. He highlighted the dangerous trend of what he described as the ruling regime’s encroachment into various fields through traps and unlawful coercion.
Workers’ Party of Turkey’s (TİP) Erkan Baş also expressed solidarity with the health workers and condemned the “judicial intervention against the TTB”.