Businessman Osman Kavala remains in prison, Turkish justice ignores ECHR injunctions

Businessman Osman Kavala remains in prison Turkish justice ignores ECHR

An Istanbul court resumed this Friday, November 26, the trial of this figure of civil society imprisoned for four years. Last month, the Turkish president threatened to declare persona non grata ten Western ambassadors who called for the release of Osman Kavala. By keeping him in detention, Turkey now faces sanctions from the Council of Europe.

With our correspondent in Istanbul, Anne Andlauer

Turkey therefore persists in not implementing the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights. Almost two years ago, the latter had demanded the release ” immediate Osman Kavala on the grounds, in particular, that his detention was politically motivated.

This Friday, while the patron has just spent four years behind bars without any conviction – having even been acquitted at first instance last year – the court extended his preventive detention. The next hearing is set for January 17.

As he had announced, Osman Kavala refused to appear in this trial which accuses him of having financed the anti-government demonstrations of the Gezi park in June 2013 and to be involved in the failed coup of July 2016.

His lawyers again insisted on the lack of evidence, on political pressure and on Turkey’s obligation to implement the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights. The Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers has threatened to initiate infringement proceedings against Ankara as early as next week, which may go as far as its suspension or expulsion from this organization of which it has been a member since 1949.

Read also: Turkey: the ambassadors of ten countries summoned after their support for Osman Kavala