‘There is no justice left in the courthouses’

Legal organisations in İzmir said, “Security and judiciary organisations are constantly rearranged according to the daily needs of the AKP. There is no justice left in the courthouses.”

The İzmir branches of the Human Rights Association (IHD), Contemporary Lawyers Association (ÇHD), Association of Lawyers for Freedom (ÖHD), İzmir Bar Association, Contemporary Lawyers Group and Lawyers for Justice made a statement on the International Day for the Right to a Fair Trial.

Speaking at the press conference held at ÇHD İzmir Branch, ÇHD Branch President Dilancan Ateş Turgal recalled that the Right to a Fair Trial Day was declared in 2021 in memory of Ebru Timtik by bar associations and legal professional organisations representing more than 3 million lawyers around the world.

Noting that 14 June is also Ebru Timtik's birthday, Dilancan Ateş Turgal said, "Every year on 14 June, a focus country is declared, and a conference is held to discuss solutions to the violations of the right to a fair trial in that country. At the end of the conference, the 'Ebru Timtik Award' is given to individuals or organisations that fight for the right to a fair trial. This year, the Philippines, where lawyers are oppressed under the pressure of gangs and the state, and where lawyers are killed by gangs every year, was chosen as the focus country. An online conference is being organised in Manila, Philippines in memory of Ebru Timtik."

Turgal said that the right to a fair trial has now turned into a rumour told in books: "Just yesterday, three accused police officers were acquitted in the Tahir Elçi Murder Case. This decision is null and void in our social memory and in the eyes of democratic public opinion. We all witnessed together how Tahir Elçi's perpetrators were rewarded with impunity. Similarly, in the Hrant Dink case, a statute of limitations was demanded in order to close the door to questioning the darkness that made a murderer out of a baby."

Remarking that there is no justice left in the courthouses, Turgal stated: "The public no longer has faith in justice either. Thousands of people are tried with papers that do not even qualify as indictments with 'terror' allegations attached to them, and the right to a fair trial is shelved as soon as the word 'terror' is mentioned. Insulting the President results in arrest, while violence against women results in impunity. Bribe-givers travel freely, while those who shout slogans are arrested. Security and judiciary organisations are constantly rearranged according to the daily needs of the AKP. The Constitutional Court (AYM) decisions are not implemented and AYM members are pointed as a target."