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1000 Days 9 décembre 2011

Posted by Acturca in Turkey / Turquie.
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BBC Monitoring Europe (UK) December 9, 2011 Friday                     Türkçe

by Derya Sazak, Milliyet, 1 December 2011

ECHR [European Court of Human Rights] Judge Isil Karakas has declared that Turkey has faced more convictions than any other country for « violations » associated with long detention periods and the freedoms of expression and the press, adding that Turkey is the worst state [where these issues are concerned]. Journalist Mustafa Balbay, one of the suspects in the Ergenekon case, has been detained in the Silivri prison for 1,000 days.

Balbay was elected deputy from the Republican People’s Party [CHP] in the 12 June elections.

Regardless of how the trial will finalize, the three years that Balbay has spent in prison has already turned into a « heavy » sentence.

In the interview to the NTV, Isil Karakas, the Turkish judge of the ECHR, warned:

« There has been an incredible increase in the applications that have been made from Turkey to the ECHR in 2011. There had been 6,000 to 6,500 applications last year, whereas this year this number has reached 9,000. The fact that the number of the applications has increased by 50 per cent means that either the rights and the freedoms of the individuals are not adequately guaranteed in the domestic law or that the people apply to the ECHR, which is an international judicial organ, because they are not able to obtain the rights that they intend to obtain. There is a lack of compatibility between the implementations in Turkey and the judicial opinion formed by the ECHR. Arrest is not a measure that may be applied to at all times. Arrest is something extremely exceptional. In other words, arrest is not an essential requirement. The essential requirement is enabling the person to remain free and to issue an arrest warrant only under very clear and very decisive circumstances. When we look at Turkey’s implementations, we see that exactly the opposite is true. In our country arrest is an essential requirement, and release is exceptional. In other words, despite the fact that the normal rule is to enable the freedom of suspects, this is exactly the opposite in Turkey. Everyone is arrested in Turkey and the trials are held with the detained suspects. The judges decide to issue arrest warrants with inadequate cliche sentences that do not elaborate and that do not explain the situation and they undersign the warrant. The three year period envisaged in the legal arrangement in Turkey is a very long period for detention according to the ECHR’s jurisprudence. »

Isil Karakas noted that 10 convictions have been passed against France for violating the freedom of expression, whereas the number of the convictions against Turkey in this field is above 200. The fact that in addition to Nedim Sener and Ahmet Sik, there are more than 70 journalists in prison is a sign of the potential decisions that will be reached by the ECHR. The KCK [Assembly of Communities of Kurdistan] operations also overshadow democracy.

The fact that the government is still watching this grave picture which destroys the country’s law, human rights, and freedom records raises concern.

It is necessary to primarily amend the Counterterrorism Law and to make new legal arrangements.

The president warns.

There are rumours to the effect that the Justice Ministry is preparing a new « reform » package.

The picture, however, does not change!

The trials prolong and prolong and keeping the suspects of « coup attempt » in prison turns into a preventive legal practice. However it is necessary to finalize the cases after trial processes that last three years.

As the trials prolong their credibility in the eyes of the public is dropping.

Even the collective cases in the 12 September 1980 military coup had not lasted this long.

This picture is not compatible with « advanced democracy! »

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