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PACE will vote on the resolution condemning the pressure on members of the Gülen Movement.

“The draft resolution prepared by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), located in Strasbourg, and to be voted on in the next session, condemns Turkey’s efforts to exert pressure on members of the Gülen Movement abroad and calls for an end to the policy of intimidation.”

“The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) is preparing to vote on a draft resolution at its summer session, which will take place between June 19 and 23, and closely concerns foreign dissidents. The report and draft resolution titled ‘Transnational Pressure as a Growing Threat to the Rule of Law and Human Rights,’ prepared by UK representative Sir Christopher Chope, will be voted on at PACE on June 20.

The draft resolution and report associate Turkey’s name with authoritarian countries that utilize transnational pressure mechanisms against dissidents, such as Russia, China, Egypt, and Tajikistan. They strongly condemn transnational pressure practices in harsh terms. The resolution also emphasizes that such practices constitute a violation not only of national law but also of international law, undermining the values of the Council of Europe.”

“There is Systematic Pressure Against Gülen Movement Members

The report and draft resolution state that there has been systematic surveillance targeting individuals associated with the Gülen Movement following the events of July 15, and international mechanisms have been exploited for this purpose. The following points are mentioned in the report and draft resolution:

“The Assembly is concerned about Turkey’s consistent policy of using some transnational pressure tools, particularly after the coup attempt in July 2016, and tracking individuals alleged to be affiliated with the ‘Gülen movement,’ referred to by Turkish authorities as the ‘Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ).’ The campaign conducted by Turkey has been found to rely on the abuse of extradition procedures, Interpol Red Notices, measures to combat terrorist financing, and collaboration with other states to unlawfully deport or transfer individuals.”

As evident from the text in the mentioned report, Turkey:

  • Abuses extradition procedures,
  • Exploits the Interpol Red Notice mechanism,
  • Manipulates measures to combat terrorist financing, and
  • Conducts unlawful deportation procedures with other states.

“The report states, based on data from Freedom House, that 58 Gülen Movement members from 17 countries were brought to Turkey. Additionally, it highlights that in violation of national and international law, in 2018, 7 teachers were brought from Moldova and 6 teachers from Kosovo to Turkey. While only intelligence units are blamed in these processes, attention is drawn to a high level of collaboration among the leaders of these countries.

“In this context, the European Court of Human Rights concluded in 2018 that the Republic of Moldova illegally transferred seven Turkish national teachers to Turkey, bypassing all guarantees provided by domestic and international law, and thereby violating their freedom rights protected by Article 5(1) of the Convention. Similar findings have been made by the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention regarding transfers from regions outside of Europe as well. It has been reported that Turkish government opponents and journalists residing in other member states are subject to threats and intimidation, sometimes necessitating police protection by the host state authorities.”

“Submission to the International Criminal Court (ICC) is included in the report

The report also mentions the submission of reports prepared by the Turkey Tribunal to the International Criminal Court (ICC):

“In 2023, a law firm, an NGO, and the European Association of Judges (MEDEL) announced that they had submitted a communication to the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), alleging that crimes against humanity are being committed or have been committed in Turkey. The communication listed the abduction of victims from different countries to Turkey in 17 enforced disappearance cases; the closure of 72 schools affiliated with the Gülen movement in 13 States Parties to the ICC Statute; and the discriminatory revocation of passports and denial of identity cards in 29 States Parties, which could be subject to prosecution by the ICC.”

TURKEY DOES NOT PROTECT THOSE SEEKING ASYLUM, ESPECIALLY UIGHURS

While Turkey engages in transnational pressure against dissidents, it also provides ease to other states within its own territory. The report notes that Turkey is not a safe country, particularly for Uighurs and Turkmen dissidents, and it also highlights the Jamal Khashoggi murder.”

“The report to be voted on in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) states that there are four main methods of transnational pressure:

  1. Direct physical attacks by the state against an individual abroad, including assassinations, assaults, disappearances, physical intimidation, and forcible transfers involving violence;
  2. Cooperation of other countries to take action against a target through detention, unlawful deportation, and other types of forcible removals allowed through superficial but meaningless legal procedures. This method involves the abuse of other forms of intergovernmental legal assistance, such as Interpol Red Notices, extradition processes, and measures to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism;
  3. Impediments that hinder mobility, prevent the target from traveling, or result in their detention, such as passport revocation and denial of consular services; and
  4. Remote threats, including online intimidation or surveillance, and coercion by targeting a person’s family, loved ones, or business partners.

Source: Ensar Nur, TR724.COM

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