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NGO compiles ECHR rulings against Turkey in new report

NGO compiles ECHR rulings against Turkey in new report


Justice Square, a human rights group based in the Netherlands, has published a newreport bringing together the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) which criticized Turkey for rights violations that occurred after an attempted coup in July 2016, the Stockholm Freedom Center reported.

Entitled Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights on Trkiye since July 15, 2016, the report analyzes a total of 49 judgments of the European Court of Human Rights issued against Ankara.

The judgments concerned 1,658 people for whom the Strasbourg court estimated that a total of 7,486,038 euros in compensation should be paid.

Among the candidates who won their case against Turkey were businessman Osman Kavala, Kurdish politicians Selahattin Demirta and Figen Yksekda and former president of Amnesty International Turkey Taner Kl as well as prominent journalists Ahmet Altan, ahin Alpay, Nazl Ilcak and Ayenur Parldak.

The report includes the facts of each case, the articles of the European Convention on Human Rights that each judgment found Turkey to have violated, and other relevant issues.

Although Turkey is a party to the convention and subject to the jurisdiction of the ECHR, the country has in recent years touted court orders ordering the release of Kavala and Demirta.

Failure to comply with the Kavala judgments prompted the Council of Europe (CoE) to launch an infringement procedure, a rarely applied procedure that could potentially result in Turkey's expulsion from the CoE.

Furthermore, last year the European Court of Human Rights announced an important stepdecisionon Yksel Yalnkaya, a teacher convicted of links to the Glen faith movement. In its decision, the court found Turkey's use of ByLock, a mobile messaging app, as well as bank accounts and union memberships as criminal evidence, illegal.

The ECHR has called on Turkey to address thousands of similar cases in which people have been prosecuted for terrorism over their use of ByLock, a problem the court described as systemic.

However, the Turkish authoritiesreportedtheir intention to interpret the judgment as an isolated case andcontinuedtheir practice of mass detentions following the use of ByLock.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoan has targeted supporters of the Glen movement, inspired by Turkish Muslim cleric Fethullah Glen, since the 2013 corruption investigations, which involved then-Prime Minister Erdoan, his family members and his entourage .

Dismissing the investigations as a coup by the Glenists and a plot against his government, Erdoan labeled the movement a terrorist organization and began targeting its members. He intensified the repression of the movement following an aborted putsch in 2016 which he accused Glen of being the organizer. Glen and the movement categorically deny any involvement in the attempted coup or any terrorist activity.

Following the failed coup, the Turkish government declared a state of emergency and carried out a massive purge of state institutions under the pretext of fighting the coup. More than 4,000 judges and prosecutors have been summarily removed from office over alleged ties to Glen.

Erdoan's government has also been accused of replacing purged members of the judiciary with young and inexperienced judges and prosecutors who have close ties to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

In a development that confirmed the erosion of Turkey's justice system, Turkey was ranked 117th out of 142 countries in the 2023 Rule of Law Index.publishedby the World Justice Project (WJP) at the end of October, losing one place compared to the previous year.

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