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Defying European call, Turkish court rules to keep Kavala detained

Following a Turkish court’s decision to keep philanthropist Osman Kavala behind bars, the ball is now in the court of the Council of Europe, whose committee of ministers will decide next month whether to start a disciplinary process against Turkey.
OZAN KOSE/AFP via Getty Images

A Turkish court ruled Monday to keep Turkey’s top philanthropist behind bars, despite a looming disciplinary process from the Council of Europe (COE) that may eventually lead to suspending Turkey’s membership from the pan-European organization. 

The court’s Jan. 17 ruling that Osman Kavala, a businessman and the founder of nonprofit cultural institution Anadolu Kultur, must stay in detention means that Ankara has passed on what Western politicians and rights advocates called its “final chance” before the COE formally starts its rarely-used infringement process against Ankara. 

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