Interim Resolution CM/ResDH(2007)150
on the execution of the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights
Hulki Güneş against Turkey

(Adopted by the Committee of Ministers
on 5 December 2007, 
at the 1013th meeting of the Ministers' Deputies)

(Application No. 28490/95, judgment of 19 June 2003, final on 19 September 2003,
Interim Resolutions ResDH(2005)113 and CM/ResDH(2007)26)

The Committee of Ministers, under the terms of Article 46, paragraph 2, of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, which provides that the Committee supervises the execution of final judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (hereinafter referred to as “the Convention” and “the Court”);

Having regard to the judgment transmitted by the Court to the Committee once it had become final;

Recalling that, in that judgment, the Court found violations of the applicant’s right to a fair trial before the Diyarbakır State Security Court, on account of:

    - the lack of independence and impartiality of the tribunal due to the presence of a military judge on the bench of the State Security Court (violation of Article 6, paragraph 1);
    - the impossibility for the applicant to examine or to have examined the witnesses who testified against him (violation of Article 6, paragraphs 1 and 3(d));

Noting that the Court found that the applicant had been subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment while in police custody (violation of Article 3);

Recalling that, as a result of the unfair proceedings the applicant was sentenced to death, a sentence which was subsequently commuted to life imprisonment;

Reiterating that, since the first examination of the case by the Committee of Ministers dating back to November 2003, it considered that the Court’s judgment required the adoption of individual measures in view of the extent of the violations of the right to a fair trial casting serious doubts on the safety of the applicant’s conviction;

Noting however that, despite the adoption of Article 90 of the Turkish Constitution, the Code of Criminal Procedure still excludes the reopening of the criminal proceedings in this case as in numerous other cases pending before the Committee for supervision of execution, as it only provides reopening of proceedings in respect of Court judgments which became final before 4 February 2003 or those rendered in applications lodged with the Court after 4 February 2003;

Recalling that the request for the reopening of proceedings lodged by the applicant had been rejected by domestic courts solely on the ground of this temporal limitation and without any assessment of the need for a new trial to remedy the specific violations found by the Court in the particular circumstances of the case;

Stressing that the Committee has adopted two interim resolutions so far (on 30 November 2005 Interim Resolution ResDH(2005)113 and on 4 April 2007 Interim Resolution CM/ResDH(2007)26) calling upon the Turkish authorities to abide by their obligation, under Article 46, paragraph 1, of the Convention, to redress the violations found in respect of the applicant and urging them to remove the legal lacuna preventing the reopening of domestic proceedings in the applicant’s case;

Recalling further that the acting Chairmen of the Committee addressed two letters on 21 February 2005 and 12 April 2006 to their Turkish counterpart conveying the Committee’s concern at Turkey’s continuing failure to comply with the judgment and urging for appropriate measures in respect of the applicant;

Deeply deploring that, notwithstanding the Committee’s two Interim Resolutions and the two letters from the Chair, no measures have yet been taken by the Turkish authorities, beyond the payment of just satisfaction, to grant the applicant, who is still serving his life sentence, adequate redress for the violations found;

Noting with grave concern that two similar cases, namely the cases of Göçmen and Söylemez, pending before the Committee also call for reopening of domestic proceedings because the applicants were deprived of their right to a fair trial and are still serving their prison sentences;

Stressing that failure to adopt the necessary measures in the present case prevents the possibility of reopening of proceedings in those cases;

Reiterating that a continuation of the present situation would amount to a manifest breach of Turkey’s obligations under Article 46, paragraph 1, of the Convention;

    FIRMLY RECALLS the obligation of the Turkish authorities under Article 46, paragraph 1, of the Convention to redress the violations found in respect of the applicant;

    STRONGLY URGES the Turkish authorities to remove promptly the legal lacuna preventing the reopening of domestic proceedings in the applicant’s case;

    DECIDES to examine the implementation of the present judgment at each human rights meeting until the necessary urgent measures are adopted.



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