The European Court of Human Rights today found Turkey guilty of failing in its duty to protect the life and freedom of expression of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant (Firat) Dink who was murdered on 19 January 2007.
The Court sentence was unanimously reached.
The Court found the Turkish authorities guilty of two violations of Article 2 (right to life – lack of an effective investigation), violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) and violation of Article 13 (right to an effective remedy) in conjunction with Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
Here is extracts from the decision of the Court:
"The Court took the view that the Turkish security forces could reasonably be considered to have been aware of the intense hostility towards Fırat Dink in nationalist circles. The investigations carried out by the Istanbul public prosecutor’s office and the Interior Ministry investigators had highlighted the fact that the police in both Trabzon and Istanbul, and the Trabzon gendarmerie, had been informed of the likelihood of an assassination attempt and even of the identity of the suspected instigators. In view of the circumstances, the threat of an assassination could be said to have been real and imminent.
The Court next considered whether the authorities had done everything that could reasonably have been expected of them to prevent Fırat Dink’s assassination. None of the three authorities informed of the planned assassination and its imminent realisation had taken action to prevent it. Admittedly, as stressed by the Turkish Government, Fırat Dink had not requested police protection. However, he could not possibly have known about the plan to assassinate him. It had been for the Turkish authorities, who were informed of the plan, to take action to safeguard Fırat Dink’s life.
There had therefore been a violation of Article 2 (in its “substantive aspect”)."
ANF / STRASBOURG
ANF NEWS AGENCY