Academics sign a letter of solidarity with Erdoğan-targeted Boğaziçi academic

Over 100 prominent Turkish economists signed a letter of solidarity with Boğaziçi academician Ayşe Buğra, who was targeted by the Turkish president, news site T24 said on Tuesday.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan last week called Buğra “the wife of the representative of Soros,” referring to Buğra’s imprisoned husband, Turkish businessman Osman Kavala whose Anatolian Culture foundation has provided funding for many civil society projects in Turkey for nearly two decades.

Buğra has been teaching political economy at Boğaziçi since 1985 and is a respected economist and author of numerous economy books.

"The wife of the person who is called Osman Kavala and is the representative of [George] Soros is among these provocateurs," Erdoğan remarked on Friday last week, referring to protestors who have for weeks been demonstrating against the government-appointed rector of Boğaziçi University.

The internationally renowned scholar in a statement after the remarks said she was "deeply shaken’’ by Erdoğan’s accusation.

A total of 140 prominent economists signed a letter of solidarity with Buğra saying they were "proud and honoured’’ to be her colleague.

Daron Acemoğlu, Hacer Ansal, Ahmet İnsel, Ahmet Haşim Köse, Refet Gürkaynak, Korkut Boratav, Nesrin Nas, Atilla Yeşilada and Ümit Özlale are among the signatories of the letter.