Committee of Ministers Chairmanship – Luxembourg: May - November 2002 

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Security forces action in Turkey: supervision of the execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights

Strasbourg, 10.07.2002 - The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe today adopted a new Interim Resolution regarding the progress achieved, and the outstanding issues in Turkey's compliance with, some 40 judgments of the European Court of Human Rights delivered between 1996 and 2002. These judgments relate to numerous violations of the Convention due notably to homicides, torture, disappearances and destruction of property committed by the Turkish security forces. All these cases also particularly highlighted the lack of effective domestic remedies against the State officials who committed these abuses.

Whilst noting that most of these violations took place against the background of the fight against terrorism in the first half of the 1990s, the Committee recalls that the fight against terrorism must be conducted in full respect of human rights. It also recalls that the execution of judgments requires the adoption of measures to prevent new similar violations.

The Committee notably welcomes Turkey's recent enhanced efforts resulting in the adoption of various important reforms to comply with the Court's judgments and also states its concern at the continuous existence of alleged torture and ill-treatment. It stresses that efficient prevention of renewed abuses requires, in addition to the adoption of new texts, the following measures to be taken: a change of attitude and working methods by members of the security forces, domestic remedies ensuring adequate compensation for victims and effective criminal prosecution of the officials responsible.

The Committee therefore calls upon Turkey to focus further efforts on the global reorganisation of Police and Gendarmerie education and training. It also urges Turkey to accelerate, without delay, the reform of its system of criminal prosecution against the members of security forces in order to establish effective deterrent sanctions against abuses.

The text of the interim resolution is available on www.coe.int/PortalT.asp

A previous Interim Resolution of 1999 can be found under http://hudoc.echr.coe.int/hudoc/ViewRoot.asp?Tname=Heres54&Id=REF00000341%20&Language=en&Item=1&Notice=0&NoticeMode=0&RelatedMode=2

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