It's been reported that ten human rights defenders who were running a workshop in Buyukada, Turkey were arrested on July 5. The workshop they were holding was about information management and digital security. All of those who were detained also had their electronics equipment confiscated. Two trainers and the owner of the hotel where the event was taking place were arrested but it was also reported that the hotel owner was only briefly detained. Among the group's defenders was the director of Amnesty International Turkey, Idil Eser.

Turkey under state of emergency since 'coup' attempt

Reports of the arrest have said that the group of defenders would be held for seven days and that they had not been charged, as the authorities determine what they should be charged with. On July 11, the Turkish authorities announced that they would be holding the activists for another week. Amnesty International released a statement demanding that Eser, Kilic and others be released immediately.

Over the last year, Erdogan has taken steps to crackdown on his opposition, often accusing a former ally and now rival Fethullah Gulen who lives in exile in the United States of masterminding a coup from afar. Last year, Erdogan claimed that insurgents within the Turkish military were trying to overthrow him when tanks, soldiers and fighter planes began attacking government structures.

Since then the Turkish President has imposed his crackdown on his opposition and declaring that the country is under a state of emergency.

It was reported earlier this year that the Turkish president was attempting to take parliamentary powers for himself which has the support of his party-led government which has caused more protests against Erdogan, under his declared state of emergency.

Nonetheless, opposition protests have been going on for over three weeks, with people marching from Ankara to Istanbul expressing their concerns over Erdogan taking power of the state for himself saying that Erdogan was eroding the nation's democracy.

Call for release of defenders

Last month, Amnesty International's chair for their Turkish division, Taner Kilic, was also arrested and as of this writing has yet to be released.

Three days after his arrest he was charged by the authorities for being a member of what they refer to as the Fethullah GulenTerrorist Organization (FETO). It's been reported that the Turkish authorities consider Amnesty International an armed terrorist organization. Amnesty International is an organization with offices worldwide that reports and organize against human rights abuses.

Erdogan's actions have not been ignored by world leaders as Turkey's membership with the European Union is still pending. The European Parliament has called for a suspension of talks over his crackdown on his own people. The workshop was organized by a rights group that is based out of the Netherlands called Hivos.

The two trainers arrested were from Germany and Sweden. Since the "coup", Erdogan has jailed more than 50,000 people.

Various members of Sweden's parliament have called for the release of two members of the group from Sweden who traveled to Turkey for the workshop. Thus far, Matthias Zimmer who is the chairman of the German Parliament Bundestag Committee on human rights sent a letter to Turkey's ambassador to Germany Ali Kemal demanding the unconditional release of two of the activists, one of them being Idil Eser.This indicates that the international demand to release these activists is growing.