The General Assembly of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers, at its 17th Congress in Hanoi, Vietnam:

NOTES the Report, dated February 2009, of the Haldane Society’s Delegation to Turkey which examined conditions of detention in Turkey and made detailed findings and recommendations.  The Report was endorsed by the European Lawyers for Democracy and Human Rights (ELDH) and the Turkish Progressive Lawyers (CHD);

IS GRAVELY CONCERNED that Turkey is falling far short of its obligations under a range of international instruments; and

CALLS UPON the government of Turkey:

(1) to recognise the existence on its territory of the Kurdish minority and of the Kurdish language, and to ratify the Council of Europe’s European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages and Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities;

(2) to end the endemic practice of torture, and of impunity for those officials responsible, and to ratify the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention Against Torture;

(3) to end the practice of isolation in “F-type” prisons, which is specifically designed on the basis of psychological research to break resistance;

(4) to end the culture of impunity for those in official positions responsible for rape and sexual violence against women;

(5) to remove Abdullah Öcalan to a facility where he has contact with other prisoners, and where he can meet members of his family;

(6) to cease its practice of removing defence lawyers from politically contentious cases by means of criminal investigations started without the knowledge of the lawyers and then never proceeded with.

Download resolution: Turkey Resolution.doc (26 KB)