Freedom for Ocalan Peace in Kurdistan
P.O. Box 100511, D-50445 Koeln
Telephone: +49 221 130 15 59
Fax: +49 221 139 30 71
Cologne, 2 May 2005
INTERNATIONAL INITIATIVE BRIEFINGS:
European rights court to rule on appeal
by Turkish Kurd leader
The European Court of Human Rights will issue its ruling in the
case of an appeal by jailed rebel Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan
on May 12, the tribunal said Monday. Ocalan is appealing against
the conditions of his detention in a Turkish prison on the remote
island of Imrali in the Marmara Sea.
His lawyer has charged that his client is being subjected to "psychological
torture", and that he is suffering from asthma and other ailments
owing to damp in the prison.
In March 2003 the Strasbourg-based court agreed with Ocalan that
a death sentence passed on him in 1999 came "at the outcome
of an unfair trial" and amounted to inhumane treatment.
But it rejected his complaint about the conditions of his detention
and the circumstances of his arrest. Both the Turkish authorities
and Ocalan appealed against the rulings.
Ocalan, 56, was captured by Turkish undercover agents in Kenya
in 1999, brought back to Turkey and sentenced to death for "treason
and separatism." He is the only detainee in the island prison.
The condemnation arose from Ocalan's role in the war for independence
waged by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in which an estimated
37,000 people died.
His sentence was later commuted to life in prison.
Source: AFP, 2 May 2005