Call for infringement proceedings against Turkey over continuation of Kavala’s arrest

As the court ruled for the continuation of Osman Kavala’s arrest on November 26, Amnesty International has addressed an open letter to the heads of states of the Council of Europe, calling on them to launch infringement proceedings against Turkey.

Amnesty International has addressed an open letter to the heads of states of the Council of Europe after the İstanbul 13th High Criminal Court ruled on November 26 that imprisoned businessperson and rights defender Osman Kavala should remain behind bars.

Underlining that Turkey refuses to comply with the binding judgement of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), the organization has urged infringement proceedings against Turkey at the meeting to be held in Strasbourg, France tomorrow (November 30).

Commenting on the issue, Amnesty International's Europe Director Nils Muižnieks has said, "Turkey's justifications for refusing to free Osman Kavala from prison have run out of steam," briefly adding:

"Turkey's refusal to implement the binding judgment of the ECtHR is an unconscionable violation of Osman Kavala's right to liberty and represents a serious threat to the integrity of the European human rights system.

"This trial is yet another brazen episode in the relentless political persecution for which the European Court has condemned Turkey.

"When a state shows such disregard for its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights, the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers must take action and initiate infringement proceedings.

"The Council of Europe and its member states must do their utmost to ensure that Osman Kavala is released."

The organization has also recalled that "Osman Kavala has been arbitrarily detained in İstanbul's high security Silivri prison as a consequence of barely disguised political persecution, for more than four years."

"Today's hearing was part of the new Kafkaesque trial in which Osman Kavala's case has been joined to the cases of 51 others, including football supporters, who face serious criminal charges of 'attempting to overthrow the constitutional order', 'attempting to overthrow the government' and 'military and political espionage'," Amnesty International has indicated further.