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TURKEY
CASE N° TK/39 - LEYLA ZANA
CASE N° TK/40 - SEDAT YURTDAS
CASE N° TK/41 - HATIP DICLE
CASE N° TK/42 - ZÜBEYIR AYDAR
CASE N° TK/43 - MAHMUT ALINAK
CASE N° TK/44 - AHMET TÜRK
CASE N° TK/48 - SIRRI SAKIK
CASE N° TK/51 - ORHAN DOGAN
CASE N° TK/52 - SELIM SADAK
CASE N° TK/53 NIZAMETTIN TOGUÇ
CASE N° TK/55 - MEHMET SINÇAR
CASE N° TK/57 - MAHMUT KILINÇ
CASE N° TK/58 - NAIF GÜNES
CASE N° TK/59 - ALI YIGIT
CASE N° TK/62 - REMZI KARTAL
Resolution adopted unanimously by the IPU Council
at its 171st session (Geneva, 27 September 2002)


The Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the outline of the case of the above-mentioned parliamentarians, former members of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA), as contained in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/171/12(a)-R.1), and to the relevant resolution adopted at its 170th session(March 2002),

Recalling that the MPs concerned were all members of the Democracy Party (DEP), which the Constitutional Court dissolved in June 1994; Ms. Zana, Mr. Dicle, Mr. Dogan and Mr. Sadak are at present serving the 15­year prison sentence handed down on them in December 1994 for membership of an armed organisation; Mr. Yurtdas, Mr. Alinak, Mr. Sakik and Mr. Türk were found guilty of separatist propaganda and sentenced to a fine and 14 months' imprisonment, which they served; as a result of that judgment, Mr. Alinak and Mr. Yurtdas are barred from practising their profession as lawyers; Mr. Toguç, Mr. Kilinç, Mr. Günes, Mr. Yigit and Mr. Kartal, all of whom fled abroad following the dissolution of the DEP, were subsequently also accused of separatism and would be arrested and prosecuted should they return to Turkey,

Recalling also that, by virtue of Article 84 of the Turkish Constitution, all but three MPs belonging to this party lost their parliamentary seats as a result of the dissolution of the DEP in 1994; considering that thirteen MPs of the DEP brought their case before the European Court of Human Rights (Sadak and others v. Turkey), which concluded on 11 June 2002 that the deprivation of their parliamentary mandate as a result of the dissolution of their party constituted a violation of Article 3 of Protocol 1 of the European Convention on Human Rights,

Recalling further that, following the dissolution of the DEP, it had expressed concern at the fact that depriving an MP of his/her seat could be the indirect result of the dissolution of the party to which the MP belonged, and that, in the case in question, the south-eastern part of Turkey had thus been deprived of two-thirds of its representatives in Parliament and an ethnic minority had been greatly limited in its ability to give political expression to its opinions and claims through representatives of its own choosing,

Recalling furthermore that on 26 June 2001, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the judgment handed down on Ms. Zana, Mr. Dogan, Mr. Sadak and Mr. Dicle had violated their right to fair trial insofar as they had not been judged by an independent and impartial tribunal and had not been given the right to defend themselves and thus the right to answer the charges laid against them; recalling finally that, in response to the question why that judgment had not as yet been implemented, the Turkish delegation to the 107th Conference (March 2002) stated that the Turkish Grand National Assembly had not adopted a government bill providing for implementation at national level of rulings of international bodies, in particular the European Court of Human Rights,

Considering that on 30 April 2002, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, which is entrusted with supervising implementation of the rulings of the European Court of Human Rights, adopted interim resolution (2002) 59 in which it strongly invites the Turkish authorities, without further delay, to follow up on its reiterated calls to remedy the situation either by allowing for a reopening of the trial or by other ad hoc measures which would repair the abuses suffered by Ms. Zana, Mr. Dogan, Mr. Sadak and Mr. Dicle,

  1. Reaffirms its conviction that the ruling of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) of 26 June 2001 warrants the immediate release of Ms. Zana, Mr. Dicle, Mr. Sadak and Mr. Dogan, since it is apparent from that ruling that their guilt has not been established; deplores the fact that they have not been released;

  2. Calls therefore once again on the authorities to release them without further delay, having in mind also that they have already spent seven years in prison on the basis of a trial which did not establish their guilt, and reaffirms that the authorities cannot argue that further legislation is needed as judgments of the ECHR are binding upon Turkey immediately;

  3. Recalls that the Turkish Grand National Assembly has repeatedly expressed its commitment to honouring its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights, and therefore forcefully calls on the Turkish Grand National Assembly to make use of all its powers to ensure the immediate release of Ms. Zana, Mr. Dicle, Mr. Sadak and Mr. Dogan;

  4. Wishes to ascertain the measures taken by the Turkish authorities to follow up on the interim resolution (2002) of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe;

  5. Reaffirms its conviction that - in common with Ms. Zana, Mr. Dicle, Mr. Dogan and Mr. Sadak - Mr. Alinak, Mr. Yurtdas, Mr. Türk and Mr. Sakik were prosecuted and sentenced on account of having exercised their right to freedom of speech and that, on the same account, charges of separatism were laid against Mr. Toguç, Mr. Kilinç, Mr. Günes, Mr. Yigit and Mr. Kartal, all of whom went into exile for fear of arrest; calls therefore once again on the Turkish authorities to grant them an amnesty so that they may return to Turkey should they so wish, and considers that the ECHR judgment in the case of Sadak and others v. Turkey adds weight to its appeal;

  6. Requests the Secretary General to convey this resolution to the Turkish parliamentary authorities, to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and to the European Parliament;

  7. Requests the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians to continue examining this case and report to it at its next session (April 2003).

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