Reference to the non-implementation of ECtHR judgments on Turkish associations by Greece
A thematic study was conducted from the Council of Europe International Conference of NGOs on the implementation of ECtHR decisions including freedom of association.
In the thematic study published by the NGO Law Experts Board, reference is also made to the non-implementation of the ECHR decisions by Greece regarding the Western Thrace Turkish society's associations Xanthi Turkish Union, the Rhodope Turkish Women's Cultural Association, and the Evros -Meriç Province Minority Youth Association.
The Council of Europe International Conference of NGOs NGO Law Experts Board has published a thematic study titled “Implementation of Decisions Containing Freedom of Association: Its Impact on Human Rights Organizations and Defenders”.
The thematic study in question addresses the difficulties in the implementation of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgments involving freedom of association.
The study, which also includes recommendations to the ECtHR, member States of the Council of Europe and the Committee of Ministers, deals with the implementation of ECtHR decisions in order to fully and effectively protect the freedom of association of member States.
In this context, it is noted that even though they have taken and reported various measures, there are many cases where full implementation is pending and the implementation process is prolonged.
The study also includes the non-implementation of the ECHR decisions by Greece regarding the Western Thrace Turkish society's associations Xanthi Turkish Union, the Rhodopi Turkish Women's Cultural Association, and the Evros (Meriç) Minority Youth Association.
It was noted that the Xanthi Turkish Association, which was founded by members of the Western Thrace Turkish community in Greece to protect and develop the culture of Western Thrace Turks and continued its activities for almost half a century without encountering any obstacles, was closed on the grounds that it was operating against public policy. In the study, it is noted that the ECHR convicted Greece for violating Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights on freedom of association, but Greece still has not implemented the ECHR's decision.
It is stated that the ECHR has ruled that the Rhodopi Turkish Women Cultural Association and the Evros (Meriç) Minority Youth Association, which were not registered by the Greek national courts, do not pose a threat to the democratic society and that there is no statement in their statutes that their members advocate violence or unconstitutional methods.
In the study, it is stated that despite the law passed in Greece in 2017, which makes it possible to hear the cases again, the implementation of the ECtHR judgments regarding the two associations in question is still pending because the appeal process before the national courts has not been concluded.
From the study, it is noted that the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe closely examined the Bekir Usta and Others Case Group.
It is noted that the Committee of Ministers urges the Member States, including Greece, that do not implement the decisions of the ECtHR, to ensure that decisions on appeals are taken promptly and fully and effectively in accordance with Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights and the case-law of the ECtHR.
The thematic study of the Council of Europe International Conference of NGOs NGO Law Experts Committee can be accessed from the follow links.