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Adali v. Turkey Judgment of the ECHR

Human Rights Cyprus considers that the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Adali v. Turkey, which was issued in 31 March 2005, is of extreme importance. The applicant was the wife of Kutlu Adali, who was shot dead in front of their home in the so – called ‘Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus’ on 6 July 1996. Mr Adali was a well – known writer who had written and published articles strongly criticising the policies and practices of the Turkish Government and the "TRNC" authorities.

He argued that Cyprus should not be divided and that Turkish and Greek Cypriots should live in a united republic based on a pluralist democratic system. The applicant contended that her husband had received several death threats because of his articles and political opinions. The European Court reiterated that Turkey is responsible for the actions of the so – called ‘TRNC’, which is only a subordinate authority and is controlled by the Turkish military forces. It was found that Turkey had violated article 2 of the European Covnention, due to the failure of the authorities to carry out an adequate and effective investigation into the circumstances surrounding the killing of the applicant’s husband. Not only had the authorities failed to take statements from key witnesses, but also the investigation file was inaccessible to the applicant, who had not means of learning about the conduct of or the progress made in the investigation and was not even invited to take part in the Coroner’s request.

It was further held that the applicant had been denied an effective remedy in respect of the death of her husband and thereby access to any other remedies at her disposal, including a claim for compensation, in violation of article 13 of the Convention. The Court further held that there had been an interference with the applicant’s right to freedom of assembly, guaranteed by article 11 of the Convention, since the applicant was refused a permit to attend a bi – communal meeting held in Southern Cyprus. It was also held that the manner in which restrictions were imposed on the applicant’s exercise of her freedom of assembly was not prescribed by law within the meaning of article 11 § 2 of the Convention.

Written by Administrator of humanrightscyprus.org    
Friday, 31 March 2006

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