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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE decided full Monitoring on Turkey (with EU effects)

CoE decided full Monitoring on Turkey (with EU effects)

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 25 April 2017

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*Stasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- In a Decision which should normaly have Important Consequences on EU - Turkey's controversial, UnPopular and Costly "Accession" claims, CoE's Assembly has just asked to submit Ankara to a Full Monitoring on Human Rights Violations and problems for Democracy and Rule of Law.

 

Such a Return Back to Full CoE's Monitoring on Human Rights Violations and serious Problems related to Democracy and Rule of Law, practicaly means tha Turkey's recent Situation clearly does Not Meet EU's "Copenhagen Criteria", which are Necessary for any eventual Candidate wishing to seek a place in EU's Enlargement process. I.e, something which can make the Lucrative Annual EU Funding (in full Grants and various Loans) earmarked for Turkey, (which currently Costs several Billions € per Year) to become Unjustified, since the Lack of one among its Key Conditions becomes now obvious.

 

 Already, Back since the Beginning of 2004, a Turkish lobby had exerted a Heavy Pressure in order to get a CoE's Decision to Cease Monitoring Ankara, so that EU -Turkey "Accession" Negociations can Start from 2005, soon Costing about 1 Billion € in full Grants each Year, added to almost 4 to 5 Billions € in Loans, which Persisted even during the Economic and Financial Crisis, (in Addition to the Blockade of EU "Constitution"'s Draft, by 3 "No" to 2005-2007 Referenda, because of "Hot" Popular reactions, up to "BREXIT"'s 2016 Debates, as well as recently Fueling "EuroScepticism" accross the EU, etc).

 

Now, PanEuropean CoE Assembly's Move in Strasbourg comes just 1 Day Before EU Parliament's "Mini" Session in Brussels holds another Turkey debate, Tomorrow, Wednesday, April 26., and while EU Commission is, reportedly, Examining to "ReConsider" EU - Turkey's Relationship, in view also of recent developments, as EU Commissioner respônsible for Enlargement and Good Neighborhood relations, Johannes Hahn from Aistria reportedly said earlier this week, shortly Before EU Foreign Ministers discuss the Future of EU - Turkey relations, (and eventually a Change of their format) in Malta on Friday. 

 

Not Only a 100% Turkish Attempt to entirely "Delete" the relevan Crucial Paragraph, in CoE Assembly's Report about "the Functioning of Democratic Institutions in Turkeyt", Drafted by Norwegian Conservative MEP Ingebjord Godskesen and Estonian Socialist MEP Marianne Mikko, but even a Turkish Lobby's Attempt to Postpone such Decisions for 1 more Year (2018), as also a Few Other MEPs from Azerbaijan, UK and pro-Kiev Ukraine asked, were Strongly Rejected by a Big Absolute Majority of MEPs in Strasbourg this Noon. 


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   - Experienced Austrian  MEP Stefan Schennach, former President of PACE's Monitoring Committee and current President of its Committee on Conflicts between CoE Member States, Reminded that, already, a Similar Draft Resolution on Re-Starting Monitoring Turkey had been Tabled 1 Year ago, and Postponed several Times, because Ankara always Asked for More Time : - Are we going to anew Postpone, again and again ?, he Wondered. We have already done so, but it only made things Worse !. In fact, the Right Time is Now :", he urged. 

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The Resolution Adopted by the Plenary of CoE's Assembly also expects from Turkey, among others, "as a matter of Priority", particularly to Stop "the Collective Dismissal of Civil Servants", and to "Release All" the Detained or Imprisoned Parliamentarians and Journalists pending trial.

 

 Ankara Government's recent "DisProportionate Measures" include, inter alia, also :  "150.000 Civil Servants, Military Officers, Judges, Teachers and Academics Dismissed. 100.000 Individuals Prosecuted and 40.000 of them Detained", as CoE's Resolution Denounces.

 

 This Turkey Debate is the Main Highlight of CoE Assembly's Plenary Session for Spring 2017, this Week in Strasbourg, where also the Heads of State from Greece and Spain, President Pavlopoulos and the Spanish King, respectively, are expected to Address the PanEuropean Organisation's MEPs on Wednesday and Thursday.


Significantly, even these 2 European Countries had, notoriously, Faced various Problems about Democracy in the Past, (f.ex. during the 1967-1974 "Colonels" regime in Athens, and the earlier Franco regime in Madrid), resulting in a "Special" Treatment by EU and CoE then, Before they Succeded, Later-on, to Overcome that situation and Establish clearly Democratic Institutions with an acceptable Legal mechanism for Human Rights respect, Concluding, Finaly, to a Normal Status in their relations with both European and Paneuropeaan Organisations until Today.


But such a Greek and Spanish RoadMap towards European Integration, passed through Real and Serious pro-Democratic and pro-Human Rights Changes, that the nowadays Turkish regime might, eventualy, not be yet Ready to realy make.

 

 

  Headquartered in Strasbourg, CoE is the Paneuropean Organisation of 47 Member States (including Russia, etc), whose main Mandate is for Human Rights, Democracy, and Rule of Law, particularly since its Heads of State/Government Summit in Warsaw (Poland) on 2004. 

  

 

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EU should take into account CoE's Findings especialy in Human Rights' issues, stressed a landmark Report on EU - CoE Cooperation in a New PanEuropean Architecture drafted by Jean-Claude Juncker, Experienced former Long-Time Prime Minister of Luxembourg and Chairman of €uro-Group, on the Official Demand of that Warsaw CoE Summit, alreadey as early as since 2006-2009, before Juncker is Elected as EU Commission's President for the current, 2014-2019 Period.
 

                                                                                                                                                         

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(NDLR : Draft NewsReport Due to be progressively Completed and UpDated asap).

 

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ECHR's President to "EuroFora" on Journalists Gongadze and Adali murders : Principles must apply to all States, without discrimination.


+ ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression (See below).


 European Court of Human Rights' President, Jean-Paul Costa, questioned by "EuroFora" on Journalists' murders, as in Gongadze and Adali's cases etc., strongly stressed all CoE Member States' obligation to make efficient Investigations to find and punish those responsible, and underlined that ECHR's case-law's principles must apply to all without any discrimination.

His call was clearly supported by various Top MEPs who denounced a risk of "Double Standards" if some Journalists' murders are investigated, while others don't.

To avoid such risks, CoE's Parliamentary Assembly adopted a Resolution, on the occasion of Ukranian Journalist Gongadze's murder, "stressing", as a matter of general Principle, "the importance it attaches to the safety of Journalists and political activists, especially those linked to opposition groups, in ALL member states of the CoE". All "crimes against journalists and political activists must be investigated ... as a matter of priority, without political interference".

Costa was replying to "EuroFora"s question on the fact that, after CoE's Committee of Ministers, also CoE's Assembly had just adopted a Resolution on Gongadze murder case, based on an ECHR's judgement of 2005, asking a full Investigation from Ukraine, who has found and condemned  in 10 years of jail 2 executants, but not yet the instigators.

While nothing similar was yet done for dissident Turkish Cypriot Kutlu Adali's murder, with 5 bullets shot at his head out of his Family's home in the territories of Cyprus occupied by Ankara's army, despite another ECHR's judgement of the same year 2005, and despite Turkey's claim that nobody was found among those responsible for the murder, and that there was nothing more to do..

In order to be credible and efficient, CoE's mechanisms shouldn't find a way to at least ask for full investigations of all Journalists' murders anywhere they might be committed, without exceptions ?

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- "On the larger question that you raised, I'd like to say, since we are in a period of stock-taking on ECHR's 50 Years, that the Court's case-law developed certain concepts ....such as the Positive obligations of States, part of which are also the procedural obligations", started to reply ECHR's President.

 - "Whenever Journalists, Lawyers, Defenders of Human Rights, or even simple Citizens are murdered, the States are held responsible, not only if its their own security forces' agents who committed these murders, but also if they didn't make sufficiently substantial and efficient Investigations", he stressed.

- "I want to strongly underline that we (ECHR) have found in many cases numerous violations of Articles 2 and 3 against States, ....(about) murders or torture, ...because they didn't make enough Investigations in order to try to find and punish those responsible".

- "We (ECHR) do that vis-a-vis all 47 (CoE) Member States, without any discrimination".

"Naturally, the circumstances in each particular case may be differend, and we can't ommit to apply the rules of proof, or the rules of criminal procedure".

"But we try, by all means, to apply these principles of our case-law, to all States", he concluded.

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      Costa's call was strongly supported by several Top CoE MEPs, from various Political areas


- "To investigate the murder of one Journalist, and not of another, looks like Double Standards", denounced the President of EuroLeft Group in CoE's Assembly, Dutch MEP Tiny Cox.  

- "What is the reason ? Politics or specificity of a case ? Of course, if Cyprus and Turkey are involved, it's always a Political case"..

- "Murders of Journalists should always be fully investigated, because killing Journalists is not only killing persons, but also killing Free Press".  "We (CoE's Assembly) should do our outmost to help People who are working on Free Press and they are under threat or murdered".

Because for Free Politics, Free Press is a pre-requisitive : Parliamentarians  cannot  function without a Free Press. Not investigating, is not protecting ourselves".

So we should investigate all Journalists' murders : We are talking about Gongadze, about the Cypriot man (Adali), about the Journalist murdered in Moscow one week ago, etc", Cox concluded

- "CoE can' look at these cases differently. CoE can't wear Blinckers  !".
- "If the one is investigated, so has to be also the other. Why there wasn't full investigation ? Why's that ?", wondered British  Socialist MEP, Alan Meale.

- "A good idea" would be to "make a Motion for Resolution", and "join all Journalists' murders. Adali and Gongadze etc", said to "EuroFora" EU Parliament Political affairs Committee's President, Goran Lindbland, ChristianDemocrat MEP from Sweden.


(See also earlier News at "EuroFora" on similar issues).
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ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression :


    Almost Half of condemnations by ECHR for violations of Freedom of Expression in 2008, concern Turkey : 20 out of a total of 48 for all CoE's Member States.

    Russia, Poland, France and Moldova were condemned only 3 times. Romania, Greece, Portugal, 2 times, and the other CoE Member States only 1 time, or none.
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    During the last Decade : 1998 - 2008, Turkey was condemned for violating Freedom of Expression in ..169 cases, while Austria only in 24.

    France and Moldova in 14 and 13, respectively, closely followed by Russia and Poland with 11 and 10, respectively. The rest of CoE Member States had less than ten condemnations.    
    

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