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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE asks Turkey for Content of Effective Investigation+Tangible Result on Cyprus MISSING People Fast

CoE asks Turkey for Content of Effective Investigation+Tangible Result on Cyprus MISSING People Fast

Written by ACM
Friday, 22 September 2017
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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/-
In an Important Decision taken by CoE's Top Political Body, its Committee of Ministers, the PanEuropean Organisation for Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law clearly urged Turkey to show the "Content" of "Effective Investigations", and "Tangible Results", on Cyprus' "Missing" People, as well as "Firmly" asked anew Ankara to Pay, at last, to Victims' Families the "Just Satisfaction Awarded by the European Court", Droping Pretexts to Drag its feet even Further since the 1974 Turkish Military Invasion and Occupation of the Northern Part of Cyprus, and/or Cover up Crimes with Total Impunity still on 2017, (See, f.ex.:
http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/turkeyhidescontentofinvestigationonmissingcypriotsdestroysproof.html ).

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The move was made during CoE Ministers' Session due to Supervise ECHR Judgements' Respect by its 47 Member States (19-21 September 2017), which was Chaired by the experienced Permanent Representative/Ambassador Arnold de Fine Skibsted, from Denmark, vice-President of the CoE, and soon due to take over CoE's  Full Presidency from November 2017 up to May 2018, included.

 

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CoE also Decided to Review anew Turkey's compliance with ECHR Judgements, (which have already Condemned Ankara several times on Cyprus' "Missing" Persons, since 2001, 2010, 2014, etc., after its First relevant damning Findings as early as since 1992, etc), at one of its Next Meetings in Strasbourg, on June 2018 : I.e. under the Presidency of Finland or France, (which has a Traditional Lead for International Protection against Enforced Disappearances, f.ex. since the confection of UNO's New and Stronger relevant Convention, back on 2006 under former President Jacques Chirac, which Entered into Force on 2010 under former President Nicolas Sarkozy, and is already supported by almost 100 Countries accross the World).


+ Meanwhile, just in a Few Hours' difference, at New York, Cyprus' President Nicos Anastassiades, Speaking at UNO's General Assembly, reminded the fact that, "since 1974 more than a Thousand Greek Cypriots are still Missing", after Ankara's Military Invasion and Occupation of the Northern Part of the Island.


>>> But, an eventual "Progress to the Humanitarian Issue of the Missing Persons" in the foreseeable Future, could become one among the key "Game Changers in Creating a Climate conductive to Resuming Negotiations", under UNO's Aspices, for a Peacefull ReUnification of Cyprus, "with the Aim of reaching a Comprehensive Settlement", President Anastassiades declared, as Also, f.ex., anOther Key Human Rights Issue, that of "the Return and Resettlement" of Greek Cypriot Refugees, at least to "Varosha" (Famagusta), by "its Rightful and Lawful Inhabitants", (etc), as "Mutually Agreed <<Confidence Building Measures>>, which are in line with the UN Security Council Resolutions and the UN Secretary General's Reports".


-  On this occasion, Anastassiades also "Urge(d) All Countries which Might hold Information" relevant to Cyprus' "Missing" Persons, "to Open their Archives, in order to Support our Efforts to giving an End to this Tragic aspect of the Cyprus' Problem".


Soon Afterwards,  UNO's Committee on Missing Persons (CMP) of Cyprus, with all its 3 permanent Members, reportedly decided to Exceptionally visit London, for Meetings with UK Government Officials about Access to Archives which May contain useful on that Tragedy. For that purpose, several CMP Meetings at UK's Defense and Foreign Ministries, the British Army's Joint Staff and its National Archives, MPs, as well as Greek-Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot NGOs on "Missing" People, were organized, given also Great Britain's 2 Big Military Bases, still existing at the Island.


The Latest UN sponsored Multilateral Conference for a Solution on Cyprus' overall Issue, faced Recently a Deadlock, at nearby Switzerland, particularly because Turkey Refused to Withdraw its Invasion/Occupation Troops when an eventual Deal would Enter into Force, and Insisted to Claim for Unilateral Military Interventions even in the Future.


- But Anastassiades declared Now his "Readiness" to "Resume Negotiations, in accordance with (UN SG's Draft) framework and always in line with the relevant UN Resolutions", for an Agreement on Cyprus' ReUnification, through "a New Conference", which "Should be thorough(ly) and solid(ly) Prepared", with "a Strong Will and Determination by All", in order "to Ensure" that it "Will Leadd to a Positive Outcome".


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However, the Decision taken Today on Cyprus' "Missing" People by CoE's Committee of Ministers, does Not impose, yet, any concrete Sanction on Turkey, Despite of all its Refusals, Delays, Diversions, etc, During too Many Years, all the way through, since a now remote Past, (See, f.ex.: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/turkeyhidescontentofinvestigationonmissingcypriotsdestroysproof.html ), and Not Even after Ankara's Latest Claims, this Week in Strasbourg, to ... "Close" several Files on Cyprus "Missing" Persons, even if its Controversial "Investigations" did Not yet produce Any Result, including also on "one among the Most Serious Crimes", as Turkish Authorities just revealed.


According to ECHR's Notes, Many among the Greek-Cypriots gone "Missing" were Seen Alive by Eye-Witnesses and/or even Photographed as "Prisoners" of Turkey's Soldiers, in Vilages controlled by Turkish Troops, Entering a Turkish Military Vehicle, some Tranfered by Ship to Prisons of Anatolia inside Turkey, or in Houses of some Turkish Cypriots, (etc).

From 2006-2009 and Later-on, CMP's official Findings on the Victims' Remains, note an Impressive Number of Cases where Deaths seems to have been provoked by mainly 1, rarely 2 "Bullet" Shot(s) Fired "to the Head", (sometimes Obviously "from Close Range"), i.e. as in Cold-Blood Executions.

Several Victims' remains also bear Traces of what might be Torture, Amputations, etc., such as, f.ex. "Hands Missing", Wounds by "a Pointing Cutting Instrument", Decapitation, Dislocated Bones, etc.
Some Remains were found Hidden (f.ex. "in a Mass Grave in a Well"), and/or in Areas Located Far Away from there where the Victims were Last Seen, Many Remains had been obviously Re-Located, (See Infra).
Many Victims were Captured Soldiers on 1974, i.e. Prisoners of War ("POW"s), but also various Civilian people, including Elders, even Women and Children.


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CoE's 9/2017 main Decisions :
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=> The Main Points of CoE's Decisions taken this week, on Turkey's Obligation to Implement ECHR's Judgements which have Condemned Ankara on Many (Bith Inter-State and Individual) Cases of Greek Cypriot "Missing" People, are the Following :


(1) Agreeing with "Eurofora"s main Critical observation, published Earlier, about a Surprizing Absence of any concrete Content of the Investigations allegedly carried by Turkey, and Rejecting Ankara's opposite Claims, send at the Last Minute, (See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/turkeyhidescontentofinvestigationonmissingcypriotsdestroysproof.html ), CoE's Top Political Body, its Committee of Ministers clearly Asks Now "the Turkish Authorities" to give, precisely, "Information on the CONTENT OF ...the INVESTIGATIONS"


And CoE Reminds that it's Not  the 1st Time that it has to do so...



(2) Moreover, CoE also Asks Turkey to "Keep" Strasbourg's Organisation "INFORMed", Not only about those Investigations which were "Finalised so far",  But Also "OF THE PROGRESS in ... Investigations" still Pending.



(3) Concerning the Timing of the on-going Investigations, CoE asks from Turkey a "RAPID Finalisation".


CoE also "Underlined the URGENCY", ("due to the Passage of Time" from 1974 until 2017), "for the Turkish Athorities" to act according to its instructions in this matter.



(4) The most Important, (Significantly underlined by the CoE from the outset, already at the 1st § of its Decision), naturally is for Turkey to "provide ...All Necessary Assistance" in order to "Achieve TANGIBLE RESULTS, as Quickly as possible".



(5) For that purpose, f.ex., CoE Accepts most of Cyprus Government's motivated demand for "the Turkish Authorities to give UNHINDERED ACCESS TO ALL possible MILITARY ZONES, Located in the Nothern Part of Cyprus", as the Final Decision asks.


Indeed, Nicosia had Denounced the Fact that, After Refusing such Access to UNO's CMP during a Long Time, Ankara "Only Recently proceeded to Partially and Hesitantly" to do so, "after intensive pressure". But, even "Nowadays, Despite Appearances and Allegations to the contrary", in fact, "Access to Military Zones is a Daily Struggle for CMP, and is Closely and Unduly Monitored by representatives of Turkish troops". While, "a Substantial part" of the Occupied Territories of Cyprus, "under the effective Control of Turkish troops, is Designated as Military Zones, and Access to them, as well as to Adjacent Areas, was for Decades Prohibited". So that, Nowadays, Turkey's Plan to provide Access in Some Military Zones, "within the Next 2 Years" (sic !) "is Neither Sufficient, nor convincing", Cyprus' Government had Warned, proposing to ask Turkey for "Immediate and UnHindered Access to All Military Zones Today".



(6) Last, but Not Least, CoE's Committee of Ministers concludes by "Insisting ... Firmly on the UnConditional Obigation to PAY the Just Satisfaction, awarded by the European Court" to the Victims, withOut (more) Delay".


CoE was, indeed, Obliged to do so "Again", as it Reminds, because Turkey, for Years, has Not yet Paid Anything out from the "30 Millions €" that ECHR's Judgement "Awarded as Non-Pecuniary Damage Suffered by the Surviving (Family) Relatives of the "Missing" Persons", at the Inter-State Case of "Cyprus v. Turkey", back on "May 2014", (concerning ECHR's Main Judgement's Findings in that affair, since 2001), as Nicosia denounced.


-"Turkey's persistent Refusal to Comply", is "a Flagrant Display of its overall Dismissive attitude", and "Undermines the Credibility" of ECHR, putting also "in Question the viability of the System of the Protection of Human Rights", Cyprus had Criticized.


+ Moreover, Ankara's Authorities persist in a similarly Negative stance also in the Individual Complaints, as that Lodged by the Families of 9 "Missing" Greek Cypriots in the "Varnava" case, in which ECHR has strongly Condemned Turkey wih a Judgement issued as early as, already since 2010...


 - "There is No ... Information to report, at this stage, with regard to the Payment of Just Satisfaction", not even to "Varnava" affair Victims' Families, merely says Turkey ... Seven Years Later, on 2017, (continuing with other various allegations against Cyprus' Government, but ...Forgetting the Families of those 9 "Missing" Greek Cypriots, for whose Fate ECHR judged Ankara responsible).


 - As for the due "Criminal Investigation" on "Varnava" himself, it "is (still) on-going", Turkey said, 7 Years after ECHR's Judgement...


However, CoE's Highest Political Body, its 47 Member States-strong Ministerial Committee, went on, Today, to take, also Specific Decisions on "Varnava" case, concerning 9 "Individual" Persons gone "Missing" :


- CoE reiterated, in absolutely Identical terms, also here, the Crystal-Clear Call that it has taken on the Inter-State Case (Comp. Supra), about "Firmly" asking Turkey to Comply with its "UnConditional" Obligation to Pay to the Victims' Families the "Just Satisfaction Awarded by the European Court", which, in these Individual Applications is, all in all, 27.000 € only "for Costs and Expenses", (plus the Legal Interest rates for 7 Years of Turkey's persisting Refusal to abide : 2010-2017).


=> In Both Cases, Turkey's persisting Refusal to Pay the Just Satisfaction awarded by ECHR will be Checked by the CoE anew, in just 2 Months Time, at its Committee of Ministers Next Session for Human Rights, on "December 2017".


+ At the Same Date, CoE decided now to Review also Turkey's parallel persisting Refusal to Pay the Compensations awarded by ECHR to a Group of Greek Cyriot Refugees/Displaced persons, who are still Hindered by the Turkish Army to Return Back and/or Access their Family Homes and/or Private Properties located in the Territories of Cyprus Occupied by Ankara's Foreign Invasion/Occupation Army, nonobstant ECHR's Judgements in the "Xenidi-Arestis" Group of cases.


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++ And CoE's Ministerial Committee also went on to explicitly "Call on the Turkish Authorities" to Ensure the Effectiveness of ... Investigatios, and their Rapid Finalisation", as well as to "Inform" the CoE "of the Progress in these Investigations", Pointing "in Particular (to) that concerning Andreas Varnava".


Varnava had been seen, by EyeWItnesses, Alive as a Prisoner transferred by the Turkish Military to a Jail in "Adana", at mainland Turkey's Anatolia plateau. Since then, his Body has Not yet been Found anywhere by UNO's CMP searches, (Contrary to Others, who were Arrested at the Same Time), and both his Fate and Whereabouts still remain Unknown...

 

 

(../..)

 

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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora" Subscribers/Donors, earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version might be published asap). 

 

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Sarkozy and Merkel want deals with Obama on European Security at Strasbourg's NATO 2009 Summit

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In parallel but concording moves, EU Chair, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angie Merkel both invited this week US-President elect, Barack Obama, to discuss important deals breaking new ground on European Security during the NATO's 60 Years Anniversary Summit of Heads of State in Strasbourg, where Obama is expected to make his 1st visit to Europe as a President on April 2009.

Merkel focused mainly on smoother NATO - EU Defence and Security policy cooperation, while Sarkozy spoke about PanEuropean Security, associating both Russia and the USA, proposing to freeze missile and shields' deployement until an agreement is reached.

But both tackled some hard nuts to crack : Turkey's VETO against the participation of EU Member Cyprus to EU-NATO cooperation, and Russia's anouncement on deployment of missiles up to Kaliningrad, at EU's belly, in reply to USA's wish to set up missile shields in EU States such as Poland or Czech Republic, etc.


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- "Certainly...one of the points that we'll dicuss with the New US President", Barak OBAMA, "who will come f'or the 1st time in Europe as president, at the NATO Summit", co-hosted by France and Germany in Strasbourg, ""concerns, above all, the European Security and Defence Policy" (ESDP), and "the relations between NATO and its partners", with whom it should "work together", anounced earlier this week Merkel.

We must find "a reasonable and adequate concept to articulate NATO and European Security and Defense policy", because of a "series of practical issues, sometimes difficult to understand", but that "we must discuss".

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- "An example" of that is "the issue of Cyprus and Turkey", said Merkel, where Ankara raises problems "from Kosovo up to Afghanistan", as also CoE's chair, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt recently observed in Strasbourg replying to EuroFora's questions.

- "We must do something to smoothen this problem for good, and not only on a case-by-case basis, laboriously negotiated each time". Here, we must find "a reasonable and adequate concept to articulate NATO and European Security and Defense policy", Merkel stressed.

- "With good will from all sides, it could and should be posible. Germany wants also to help on that". Otherwise, "the coming generations will not understand why it took Decades to do so". But, if we "don't even achieve that for Decades, this would be an Historic Failure !", the German Chancellor warned

- "I think that our American partners are increasingly realizing that", Merkel said, pleading for "a stronger European Security and Defence policy, with which, I believe, the Atlantic Security Partnership can also strengthen and solidify".

Meanwhile, USA is also due to take in 2009 a special status inside EU-led EUROCORPS, the European Army HeadQuarters, based in Strasbourg.

Merkel said that after meeting in Berlin with NATO's Secretary General, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, earlier this week, precisely in order to "prepare NATO's Summit", scheduled for the beginning of April 2009 in Strasbourg.

Scheffe, knows well Strasbourg, since he chaired the CoE, as Holland's Foreign Minister, when he brokered a controversial deal precisely on Turkey and Cyprus about the implementation of ECHR judgements on Greek Cypriot displaced persons' houses and properties in 2003. He returned later at least once, for a WEO meeting at the CoE, where he precisely had highlighted such EU - NATO issues.

EU Commission's 2008 Report on Turkey has just observed that, on European Defense - Security policy, "Turkey continues to object to EU-NATO Cooperation which would involve all EU Member States". "This created Problems for EU-NATO co-operation in the context of Civilian ESDP missions, in particular in Kosovo and Afghanistan".
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 French EU Chair, President Sarkozy and Merkel are visiting Washington on Friday and Saturday for a Global G-20 Summit with current US President George Bush, on the sidelines of which are expected preparatory contacts with US President-elect Obama's entourage, even if himself might stay in Chicago until he takes over on January 21.

Before going to Washington, Sarkozy concluded today an UE - Russia Summit with Dmitry Medvedev, where they "spoke in length on PanEuropean Security" :

- As EU President, I proposed that we meet on mid-2009 in a framework such as OSCE's in order to set the foundations of a Future Pan-European Security, which would associate Russia and USA, and that, meanwhile, nobody speaks about deploying missiles or shields, which complicate the situation".

- NATO's Summit in Strasbourg-Kehl, on April 2009 is a perfect occasion to discuss with our American friends and to prepare a possible OSCE Summit for these issues f.ex. for June or July", Sarkozy concluded.

- We must all abstain from Unilateral measures" dangerous for Europe's security. "Russia only reacted to decisions taken by some other countries. But if they are ready to cooperate, we are ready to discuss. EU could be an intermediary", added Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, before going himself too at the Washington G-20 Economic Summit.

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