The U.S. Embassy in Turkey, against the background of the statement by Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan about the declaration of persona non grata of 10 ambassadors, including the United States, said that it does not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries.

“We are committed to article 41 of the Vienna Convention on Non-Interference in the Internal Affairs of Countries,” the U.S. Embassy said in a statement.

The embassies of 10 countries – Canada, France, Finland, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and the United States – earlier called on Turkey to release Turkish human rights activist Osman Kavala. After that, the Turkish Foreign Ministry confirmed the summons of the ambassadors of these countries; they were reminded of the need to comply with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. Following this, Erdogan said that he had instructed the Turkish Foreign Ministry to declare the ambassadors of 10 countries persona non grata, who called for the release of human rights defender Kavala.

Osman Kavala is a well-known Turkish human rights activist, founder of the Anadolu Kültür AŞ Cultural Foundation, which, in particular, supports ethnic and religious minorities projects, often with an international focus including reconciliation between the Turkish and Armenian populations and a peaceful solution to the Kurdish issue.

In February 2020, a Turkish court acquitted Kavala on charges of involvement in an attempt to overthrow the government in the case of protests in Istanbul’s Gezi Park in 2013. Still, the Istanbul prosecutor’s office issued a new arrest warrant for him on the same day. Kavala was charged again, this time with participating in the attempted coup in Turkey in July 2016.