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Αρχική arrow newsitems arrow ECHR to hear Muslim Woman's plea against Sharia Law in EU Member Greece, while Erdogan visits

ECHR to hear Muslim Woman's plea against Sharia Law in EU Member Greece, while Erdogan visits

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Wednesday, 29 November 2017

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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- While, for the 1st Time in 65 Years, a Turkey's President will be Visiting Greece, where he wants to meet also with a Muslim Minority of Greek Citizens at a Province, ECHR's Great Chamber will hold a Public Hearing on Sharia's applicability in Europe nowadays, Next Week in Strasbourg, after a Complaint lodged by a Muslim Woman with Greek Citizenship who asks to Protect her Family's Right Not to be Submitted to Islamic Sharia Law, even against their Freely and Clearly Expressed Will.


Her Husband had decided, in a Will signed in front of a Notary, to leave all his belongings to his Wife. But, after his Death, some Relatives sued his Widow to the Courts, claiming that Sharia Law should Exclude the ordinary Civil Law, and, therefore, he would Not be Free to Decide about his own Inheritance, since Sharia would be Imposed instead.


The only Property, included in the Disputed Heritage, which could be used as a Home, is the Half of an Appartment, while he Widow of the Deceased Man denounces that his Relatives ask, in fact, to get for them 2/3 of her Husband's belongings.


0n August 2016, ECHR raised 2 Questions, to all parties involved, about the Respect of Human Righs to "Fair Trial" and "Private Property", vis a vis such claims to Impose Sharia Law on EU Citizens of Muslim confession, even against their will, and by Excluding the ordinary Civil Law applicable to all other EU Citizens living in Europe.


Sharia Law has been remplaced by ordinary Civil Law even inside Turkey itself, already since the 1920ies, but Ankara's Authorities reportedly persist to Claim that it should apply, nevertheless, to all the Muslim Minority with Greek Citizenship living in Western Thrace, which is part of the EU.


In the Past, such Decisions affecting Citizens' Rights in Society, as Settlements of Disputes about Alimonies, Guardianship, Emancipation of Minors, Wills and Inheritance, in addition to Separations and Divorce, etc., had been reportedly assigned to the Competence of Civil Servants appointed and monitored by the State of Greece. But after the 1920ies, they were transfered to Muslim Muftis, even if they tresspassed their strictly Religious duties.


This was Later Doubled also by a Parallel, separate Dispute, about the Choice of Muftis for the Muslim Minority of Greek Citizens living in Western Thrace (Greece), while Muftis educated in Turkey (whenever they might, eventually, officiate afterwards inside Europe, USA, or elsewhere in the World), are notoriously Chosen, Trained, Appointed and Monitored by Ankara's Government, (instead of any Independent Religious Community).


Initially, the embattled Widow won her cases to the 1st and 2nd Level Greek Courts from 2008-2011, which defended her Husband's Right to Freely Decide to whom he wants to transmit his personal Belongings, according to the Ordinary Civil Law applicable to all EU Citizens in Europe, by evoking the principles of Equality and Non-Discrimination, Freedom, Private Property, etc.


But, Later on 2013-2015, the Highest Courts in Greece accepted he Husband's Relatives' claim that Islamic Sharia Law should be Imposed to all Greek Citizens of Muslim Confession living at the Western Thrace Province, argying that this would still result from the 1920 Treaty signed at Shevres (France) and the 1923 Treaty of Lausane, as ECHR noted.


Meanwhile, the current Prime Minister of Greece, Alexis Tsipras, has reportedly prepared Recently a Draft Law which Confirms all Greek Citizens' Right to use, in Equal conditions as all other EU Citizens, the ordinary Civil Law and Courts, if they wish so, without being Obliged to be Submitted to Islamic Sharia Law, unless Members of that particular Muslim Minority ask for it.


'''Controversies against Recent Claims to apply the Islamic Sharia Law in Europe have reportedly Emerged not only in Bosnia-Herzegovina (Western Balkans), but even in core EU Member Countries cush as Germany and France (where this was Strongly Rejected), as well as (even "Hotter") in the UK, etc, almost in Parallel with the Rise and Decline of "Islamic State"'s Deadly Terrorists, cowardly Targetting innocent Civilian People in systematic Brutal Aggressions, (Decapitations, Bombings, Mass Shootings, Car/Lorry crashes over pedestrians, Axe/Knife/Manchette Attacks, etc).


So that Next Week's ECHR Public Hearing in Strasbourg has attracted a quite Widespread Attention, both accross Europe and elsewhere in the World, as far as General Principles of Human Rights may be affected, judging by Press Articles published on that issue, and the 3rd Party Interventions of relevant NGOs, such as that of "Christian Concern" (UK), Helsinki Monitor for Greece (GHM), Hellenic League for Human Rights, etc., with written observations.


Erdogan (as well as his Government's Ministers) have been notoriously Hindered to Speek in Public Meetings of Turkish Immigrants recently in EU Countries such as the Netherlands, Germany, etc., after Harsh Criticism and various Troubles, but Foreign Minister Cavusoglou was authorized to do so inside a Building in France, and now the Turkish President asked and was authorized by Athens' Government to meet Greek Citizens of Muslim Confession at a Province located near the Borders between EU Members Greece and Bulgaria with Turkey, in Western Thrace, (North-East Greece).

 

(../..)


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  Ten Years of ECHR : 1998 - 2008 show need of Revival in 2009-2010 coinciding with 2009 EU Election
   

A threefold, coordinated move by new Top French Political actors in the 2009 EU Parliament Elections, expressed in Strasbourg a will to boost Europe's Political dimension close to Citizens' concerns, going from protection of Economy to defence of Human Rights.    

The move met an exceptional ECHR's call for a "revival" of Human Rights' protection mechanism', in a Mega-Conference, early 2010.   

Obviously focusing on June 2009 Elections to EU Parliament, it involved from the outset the recently nominated "dual" Head of French Governing Party (UMP)  Michel BARNIER and Rachida DATI :

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     - "As President Sarkozy has clearly said, we (France) are in favor of a Strong, Sovereign and Independent, Political Europe, which protects its Citizens, and not for a large Super-Market, nor for a Europe under influence",

    "This goes for everything, including Energy", added to "EuroFora" the experienced former EU Commissioner, Minister of Foreign affairs, currently of Agriculture and Sarkozy's new pick as Leader of the Governing party UMP to EU 2009 Election, Michel BARNIER                                              .                             

  - Human Rights are important because they are at the Heart of the Political Europe that we aspire for : I.e. a Europe able to act and protect its Citizens, stressed also the New French Minister for European affairs, Bruno LE MAIRE, while meeting Strasbourg's Journalists at his first visit to the CoE.   

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This is one of the main interests for CoE, which is also a natural place for cooperation between EU countries and Russia or Turkey, which was recently helpful at the Middle East crisis, he added.

The move gained momentum with French Minister of Justice, Rachida Dati's main observations at ECHR's 5Oth Anniversary :   

- "While we are seeking Europe's Borders and Identity, you (ECHR) remind us also of its Values", Human Rights, Dati noted.   

Citizens seek more and more often ECHR's help, and the tempo accelerates, Europa awaits a symbol, while national legal orders are not freezed   

And she expressed "support" to ECHR President Jean-Paul Costa's call to satisfy the vital need to revigorate the PanEuropean Court by deciding big changes at a High-Level Conference open to a large audience, a kind of "Etats Generaux" of Human Rights, at the beginning of 2010.       

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It's not so much the recently growing number of applications for Russia or Ukraine etc, which seems to be Costa's main concern : In fact, the cases declared "admissible" are much fewer...    

But rather the persistent violations of Human Rights, sometimes very grave (ie. murders, torture, abritrary deprivation of liberty, oppression of freedom of speech, destructions of homes/properties, etc), despite numerous, repeated condemnations by ECHR. So that CoE's Ministers, due to "supervise execution" of ECHR's judgements, are overloaded.   

F.ex. most Media noted that Turkey still remains, even in 2008, the 1st among 47 CoE member States in the number of condemnations by ECHR :  257, compared to 233 for Russia, with a population more than the double..    

The problem is that it's not the 1st time at all : During all the last Decade 1998-2008, Turkey was condemned by ECHR much more than any other State, and for particularly grave violations :   

- 1.652 condemnations, compared to 605 for Russia, 548 for Poland, 494 for France, 476 for Ukraine, etc.   

Italy's second place with 1.394 condemnations is a misleading false appearance : In fact, most of them (999) concern mere "procedural delays" in national courts. Same for France.   

On the contrary, Turkey was condemned 180 times for Killings, 192 times for Torture or Inhuman/Degrading treatments, 340 times for arbitrary deprivation of Liberty, 528 times for "Unfair trial", and 169 times for oppression of Freedom of speech, (etc). And the latest, 2008 numbers, indicate no change in this trend, (See supra).   

The current Spanish CoE Presidency (November 2008 - May 2009) has made of the implementation of ECHR's judgements its 1st Priority.   

ECHR's President, Jean-Paul Costa, stressed in its 2009 Annual Press Conference, CoE Member States' obligation to implement the judgements, according to Article 46 of the European Convention on Human Rights.   

Moreover, if CoE's Committee of Ministers delays to ensure implementation, then, the repetition of violations in similar cases provokes a multiplication of complaints tabled to the Court, which overload the mecanism for the protection of Human Rights, denounced Costa.          

A series of Debates on "the situation of Human Rights in Europe", focusing on the "need to fight against Impunity" of perpetrators of grave crimes, is  currently prepared by CoE's Parliamentary Assembly for the session of June 2009.  

The final Timing comes shortly AFTER the EU Elections, but the main Reports should have been adopted before.

Meanwhile, French President Sarkozy and German Chancelor Merkel's recent call "for a Political Europe" in 2009 EU Elections (See earlier "correspondence from Paris, Elysee Palace), seems more and more endorsed also by other EU Countries' Top MEPs :

Thus, f.ex., EU Parliament's 1st vice-President, Greek MEP Mrs Rodi KRATSA, speaking to "EuroFora", agreed that 2009 EU Election would be a "naturally good" opportunity to debate what really interests EU Citizens : "The Future of a Political Europe, able to face the Economic Crisis, with a Culture and identity which attracts the People"

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(Photo taken earlier during Sarkozy's 1st visit at EU Parliament, in 2007 : Sarkozy and Merkel's Ideas for a Political Europe inspire also other EU politicians accross the continent)..
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