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Home arrow newsitems arrow As Impunity Risk in Cyprus' Missing People Murders grows, CoE stresses Turkey's duty to Investigate+

As Impunity Risk in Cyprus' Missing People Murders grows, CoE stresses Turkey's duty to Investigate+

Written by ACM
Friday, 06 December 2019


*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/-
Among the Worst Violations of Human Rights in the World are those which may Target "Missing" Persons: Murders, Torture/Inhuman-Degrading Treatments, (in Isolation, at the Dark), Muzzling and/or Family Rights trampled underfoot, etc., while many Victims' Families face Tragedies, condemned to Wait for many Years/Decades an UnCertain "Return" of a beloved one, withOut even knowing if he/she is still alive...   

Europe had, unfortunately, the "privilege" to Test, there, its Human Rights' Protection Mechanisms the 1st, in this Post-World War Era, Starting with many ECHR's Cases since the 1974 Turkey's Military Invasion and Occupation of Cypus' Northern Terriories, But Latin-American Institutions and/or Politics managed to soon Catch-up, and even sometimes Bypass Europeans, particularly in the Fight against Impunity of Horrible Crimes, (Comp., already, also from an EU point of view, as early as since 2012, at: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/redingonvictimscyprusmissing911.html, etc).


Nowadays, the "Old" and "Classic" Issue of ECHR's case-law on Cyprus' "Missing" Persons, has Reached a Crucial Stage in Strasbourg :

During the Last 10 to 15 Years, from 1.510 "Missing" Greek Cypriots, the Remains of 695 Persons have been Identified, and Turkish Authorities Claim to Investigate 306 Cases, CoE noted. This includes POWs, even Women, Children, Elder Civilians, etc, almost certainly Captured Alive, withOut knowing what happened to them afterwards, and who was responsible.

But the Content and Conclusions of such "Investigations" have Not yet been Disclosed, save in Only Four (4) Cases ! Even Worse : Not even a Single Case has led to Any Prosecution proceedings against any Suspect, until Now (12/2019), Denounced the Cyprus' Government...

On the Contrary, in 3 cases on which Turkey gave some "Clarifications", including an important one, earlier Singled out by the COE, (that of Savvas Hadjipanteli, in Varnavas affair, a Bank Employee, reportedly "Taken for Questioning by Turkish Soldiers, and "Recorded" by "Representatives of the International Red Cross", before a Gang of T/C Emptied a Safe at his Bank, with a Key that he always carried with him, Finding Afterwards his Body in a Mass Grave, with a Bullet shot in his Skull), the Turkish Authorities "found ... that the available Evidence was Not Sufficient to initiate a Prosecution, and that until further evidence is available, the Investigations should be considered Closed" !      

     "Military Zones" (60% of the Occupied Territories of Cyprus, controlled by the Turkish Army) ; "Complicated" and "Time Consuming" "Procedures for gaining Access" ; Refusals to Excavate even in Civllian Areas, on pretext that an Owner and/or Occupant did No give his/her Consent ; Information on Mass Burial Locations WithHeld f.ex. in Turkish Military Archives, by "military or auxiliary Personnel who participated in the military Invasion of Cyprus by Turkey in 1974" ; Many Disturbances of Burial Sites and ReLocations of Human Remains, (etc); are among a Long List of Obstacles which Threaten to "Conceil Evidence of Crimes", Cyprus' Government Denounced.

=> In Consequence, CoE's Committee of Ministers, in a Decision adopted Today in Strasboug, stressed from the outset that, "due to the passage of time", it is "Urgent for the Turkish Authorities to advance", with a "Proactive approach" to provide" the "Committee on Missing Persons", with "all Necessary Assistabce to Achieve Tangible Results".    

>>> For that purpose, CoE asked Turkey to provide "UnHindered Access to All Areas which could contain the Remains of Missing persons". Given also the Fact that, with the passage of Time, Witness testimony becomes Scarcer", in consequence, "Documentary Evidence is Urgently Needed", in order "to Identify possible Burial Sites". Therefore, CoE Calls Turkey to "provide ...withOut Delay, ... All Information at their disposal relating to Burial Sites and Any Other Places where Remains might be Found, including ... Military Archives".

- Most Important, CoE expressed its "Interest" about "Information, ... on the ...Investigations", (Comp. Sypra). and Confirmed a "Call on the Turkish Authorities to Ensure the Effectiveness of the Investigations, as well as their Rapid Finalisation".

=> That's why CoE asked Turkey to "Transmit to the Committee of Ministers information on the progress of the Investigations and their Outcome".

This goes,  "in particular, in the Case of Savvas Apostolides", (a Young Conscrit/POW who had been reportedly Seen, by one of his Friends, Captured Alive, inside the Adana Prison at Mainland Turkey), as CoE's Official Decision points out.

+ Meanwhile, CoE, also, "Insisted again firmly on the Unconditional Obligation of Turkey to pay the Just Satisfaction awarded by the European Court in the Judgment "Cyprus v. Turkey" of 12 May 2014, withOut Further Delay".

This concerns 30 Millions € that ECHR's Grand Chamber has awarded, for Moral Damage, to the Families of "Missing" Persons, already 5,5 Years Earlier, but to whom, Turkey has Not yet paid not even a dime...        

On the Contrary, Ankara is reportedly Abusing of its own Obligations in order to ...Blackmail its Victims even on Other massive Human Rights Violations, as, f.ex., the Big Issue of Greek Cypriot Refugees/Displaced Persons (about 21% of the Total Island's Population, of whom Only a Few still struggle to survive in the Occupied Territories of Cyprus, invaded and controlled by Turkey's Military)...           

CoE, except from Repeating the above-mentioned, Correct, but obviously Toothless Verbal Formula, several times, has Not Yet undertaken any known effort to impose the slightest Sanction to Turkey for its blatantly shameless and provocative behavior vis a vis elementary Human Rights, until now.    

Those 2 Issues are due to partly criss-cross eachother, inside CoE's Committee of Ministers' session for the Execution of ECHR's Judgements scheduled on June 2020.

But, will it be in order to really Strengthen Human Rights, or, in order to Yield to just another Turkish Blackmail, among notoriously too many, nowadays, (at CoE, EU, NATO, UN levels) ?        





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     The High-Tech, brand new Crisis' management Center (CMC) inaugurated Wednesday by French Minister Bernard Kouchner, fits well EU's Humanitarian and Security-Defence aims, revealed a gathering of the largest Group of MEPs (EPP) organised in Paris these days, to prepare the debate on French EU Presidency's priorities (July - December 2008), that President Nicolas Sarkozy will present next week in EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

        Due to face a large spectrum of Crises : from Humanitarian (f.ex. Natural Catastrophes, evacuation of Civilians or rapatriation of expats, populations exposed to Hunger and/or risky Sanitary conditions, etc), to various consequencies of Terrorist threats, Armed conflicts, or of Peace-keeping operations, etc, and joining Geopolitics with Diplomacy, CMC is able to deal with urgencies in real time anywhere in the world, by concentrating qualified Experts and impressive High-Tech equipment (i.e. Giant Computer Screens working in parallel, Visio-conferences, Satellite connections, etc).




        Kouchner stressed that "Humanitarian and Political considerations can co-exist in real practice, if each one respects its independence", and, speaking to EuroFora, underlined his intention to have special representatives in "Strategic" locations, creating a "Network", open particularly to European cooperation.


        - "We must fill the gap in Europe's Civilian and Military capacities", declared earlier at Matignon, French Prime Minister Francois Fillon, while EU Commissioners met with their counterparts among French Ministers.

        This point was at the focus of European People Party's "'Study Days" in Paris, from 2 to 4 July 2008, entitled  : "For a Safer Europe", with a central Debate on EU's Security and Defence policies, where EU Parliament's President, German MEP Hans Gert Poettering, French Minister of Defence Herve Morin, and the Chairman of EU's Defence Committee, MEP Karl von Vogaw, spoke before meeting with Sarkozy, Wednesday afternoon.

    - "We need specifically European systems, including, f.ex. Satellite networks, etc", stressed the experienced Chairman Karl von Vogaw, speaking after the meeting with President Sarkozy to European Journalists from EuroNews, EuroPolitique and EuroFora.
    - And there where "European forces are already gathered, (f.ex. in Cyprus, Balkans, Lebanon, etc), if new operations started, I'd prefer to see them under European command in Future", he added, in reply to questions on how to overcome problems raised by a 3rd Countries as Turkey.

    Vogaw presented earlier, at EPP's plenary, a comprehensive Report on EU's Security and Defence policy, with a strong High-Tech component (including Satellites, UAV, protected Telecoms, Strategic Air and Sea Transports, Space assets, etc), sharp references to Political will and Historic necessities, while also stressing that EU must overcome the divide between Civilian and Military research and activities, making "a close cooperation between Civilian and Military means" a "specific" mark of Europe.

    The experienced Top MEP, after helping to build the "EuroZone", as a long-time Chairman of EU Parliament's Economic Committee, has recently started to chair a brand new "Security and Defence Committee", aiming to build European Defence, as the 2nd task of his life, as he told earlier to EuroFora.


     The Committee, chaired by Vogaw, will hear, next week in Strasbourg an Experts' view about on the French EU Chairmanship's priorities in ESDP on Wednesday, before President Sarkozy's plenary debate, exceptionally on Thursday.


2009 EU Elections were won by Parties against Technocracy and Turkey's controversial EU bid, while the 1999-2004 Majority Abstention trend decelerated. What should be done in 2009-2014 ?


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