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Ahval announced that the Society of Friends and Supporters of the Tonhalle awarded the Tonhalle Human Rights Prize for 2022 to Turkish philanthropist Osman Kavala, the concert hall in Düsseldorf (…)

Düsseldorfer Symphoniker chief conductor and initiator of the prize Adam Fischer said Kavala’s imprisonment was a shocking example of massive political interference with the judiciary.

“Obviously a man campaigning for human rights is to be punished and silenced,” Fischer said.

The award ceremony will be held in the concert hall on March 19. As Kavala remains behind bars, German-Turkish politician and Germany’s Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir will receive it on Kavala’s behalf.

Previous winners include Doctors Without Borders (RSF) and Fridays for Future.

Kavala was arrested in November 2017 on charges of espionage and plotting to overthrow the government through the 2013 Gezi Park protests.

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled for the Anadolu Kültür foundation founder’s immediate release, saying his arrest was politically motivated.

The Council of Europe (CoE) has launched a disciplinary procedure over Turkey’s refusal to implement the ruling that could result in the country’s expulsion from the council it was a founding member to.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said Turkey would not comply.

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