1.5 million euros awarded to plaintiffs from Turkey by rights court in 2020

The Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) ordered Turkey to pay a total of 1,548,027 euros in awards to plaintiffs in 2020 after it concluded 168 applications from the country, Turkish Minute reported.

According to the 14th annual report released by the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers on Wednesday, there are still 624 pending cases filed from individuals from Turkey at the court.

A total of 2,170,693 euros was awarded to plaintiffs from Turkey in 2019.

In the report the court also referred to its decisions about businessman and rights activist Osman Kavala and Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş, who have been jailed on politically motivated charges for several years. Despite the court’s rulings for the immediate release of Kavala and Demirtaş last year, Turkey has refused to free them.

“Extended detention of a human rights activist accused of attempting to overthrow the Government or the constitutional order, without reasonable suspicion that the applicant had had such violent intentions. Regard being had to the particular circumstances of the case and the grounds on which the Court had based its findings, the respondent State was required to take measures to put an end to the applicant’s detention and to secure his immediate release,” said the court in its report concerning Kavala’s case.

As for Demirtaş, the court said there is prolonged detention of a member of parliament on the basis of charges of terrorist activity resulting in his exclusion from parliamentary proceedings without sufficient justification in his case.

“Regard being had to the particular circumstances of the case and the grounds on which the Court based its findings, the respondent State was required to take measures to put an end to the applicant’s detention and to secure his immediate release,” said the court.

Turkey, where gross human rights violations have been taking place since a failed coup in 2016, has been receiving widespread criticism abroad and within Turkey for not enforcing the ECtHR rulings.

According to an activity report announced by the court in January, Turkey was among the five countries from which the highest number of applications were filed at the court in 2020 along with Russia, Ukraine, Romania and Italy. Applications from these five made up 75 percent of all applications filed with the court last year.

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