Boston Celtics

With NBA on Hold, Celtics' Enes Kanter Keeps Up Fight For Human Rights

Kanter has launched a campaign to advocate for political prisoners in his homeland

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Since the NBA season was abruptly suspended in March due to the novel coronavirus, Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter has used his time to battle what he describes as human rights abuses in his native country, Turkey. 

Kanter has launched a campaign called "You Are My Hope" on Change.Org to advocate for political prisoners in his homeland.

NBC10 Boston and NECN reporter Joy Lim Nakrin caught up with Kanter to discuss the efforts.

The issue has taken on new significance during the global coronavirus pandemic. According to reports, tens of thousands of inmates have been released from Turkish prisons in a bid to slow the spread of the virus, yet political prisoners jailed on terrorism charges, including journalists, remain behind bars.

Kanter's own father was held political prisoner in Turkey and currently awaits trial on such charges. Kanter himself was similarly charged for speaking out against Ankara. The Turkish government currently has an international arrest warrant out for him and even revoked his passport. 

The You Are My Hope campaign has garnered more than 50,000 signatures along with video endorsements from figures such as Rep. Seth Moulton, former education secretary Arne Duncan, Sen. Chuck Grassley and actor Terry Crews.

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