Universities Finland UNIFI condemns the forced resignation of 1577 university deans and calls for institutional autonomy and academic freedom for scholars and students
Following Friday’s coup attempt in Turkey the education sector, including the higher education sector, has been targeted, as have many other public sectors.
Over 15 000 education staff have been suspended while it has been reported that the Higher Education Council (YÖK) has ordered the resignation of all Deans from both Turkey’s Public and foundation universities, 1176 from state universities and 401 from Foundation universities.
Universities Finland UNIFI condemns this action against universities and university staff, and expresses its strong support for the higher education community in Turkey. More than ever Turkey needs freedom of speech, public and open debate, as advocated by its strong university sector, committed to internationally recognised university values, the principles of academic freedom, free expression and freedom of association.
Universities Finland UNIFI calls on all European universities and scholars to speak out against these developments and to support democracy in Turkey, including institutional autonomy and academic freedom for scholars and students.
In Helsinki, 21st July, 2016
Universities Finland UNIFI