World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Turkey: Human rights effort lauded but more needed

UN expert lauds Turkey’s human rights effort but urges respect for all groups

While hailing Turkey’s rights efforts and initiatives by noting that “significant progress” has been made, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism called today for more to be done to investigate allegations of torture, and to respect the linguistic and cultural rights of all groups living in the country, including the Kurds.

Following his visit to Turkey from 16 to 23 February, a UN statement said that Martin Scheinin, who is an independent expert serving in his individual capacity, has now issued a preliminary report, putting forward a series of recommendations including the need to narrow the definition of terrorism, so as to make “the fight against such crimes more targeted and effective.”

The Special Rapporteur noted “with great satisfaction that the many efforts undertaken by the Government in the area of human rights, such as intensified human rights training, a zero-tolerance policy vis-à-vis torture and a considerable improvement in physical conditions of places of detention have led to significant progress, which is widely recognized by the civil society.”

At the same time he said he has “not found convincing evidence that independent and impartial mechanisms to investigate allegations of torture and ill-treatment of terrorism suspects are in place.” He also voiced regret that “no functioning monitoring system for places of detention by independent human rights institutions or non-governmental organizations exists in Turkey.”

Mr. Scheinin reminded the Government that while a law on compensating victims of terrorism was a “very laudable step in the right direction” it nevertheless falls short of full restitution and rehabilitation.

He also stressed that respecting economic, social and cultural rights helps to eliminate the risk that individuals make the “morally inexcusable decision to resort to acts of terrorism.”

He emphasized that for all inhabitants of Turkey to fully enjoy their human rights without discrimination, “persons belonging to different cultural and linguistic groups, including the Kurdish population, should enjoy protection of their cultural and linguistic rights.”

Mr. Scheinin accepted the appointment as first Special Rapporteur on human rights and counterterrorism on 8 August 2005. He previously served eight years as a member of the UN Human Rights Committee. He is Professor of Constitutional Law and International Law and Director of the Human Rights Institute at Abo Akademi University in Finland.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

ALSO:

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC