By N.N*. – Turkey | Tsjustice.info |
1. Because of some criminal investigation against high profile government and intelligence agencies such as 17-25 December 2013 Corruption Cases, MIT Truck to ISIS cases, President Erdogan see the judiciary as a serious threat to reach his personal, and political aim rooted Political Islamist Ideas backed 1990s. Therefore, he launched a linch campaign to judges, who had charged with these cases.
2. Following corruption allegations implicating government ministers and Erdoğan’s own family in December 2013, the government in 2014 embarked on dramatic moves to demote and discharge the judiciary. Although, High Council of Judges and Prosecutors is a constitutional institution, the ruling party passed a law in order to reframe the Council. European Council esteemed the amendment that The impact of the executive power on the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors (HCJP) in Turkey has not diminished but rather has increased by this law.
3.This law above was overruled by the Constitutional Court, but effect of the law was still exist even if it was justified unconstitutional because of misinterpreted non ret-roactivity of rulings of constitutional court decison. The decision had come very late, the council already redesigned (Secretary General, vice secretary, all judges, and some civil servants auxiliary staff including drivers, servants, replaced with new ones) ministry of justice has become a key actor to prodominately determine all administrative process.
4. In order to cover ongoing criminal cases, the only way for President Erdoğan was competely control the judiciary, and HCJP. The council is charged with administering the justice system, including the appointments, assignments, and oversight of judges and prosecutors. We witnessed highly political judicial election in October 2014. Erdoğan knows that it is impossible to control all the judiciary immediately. That’s why he chose to create special courts, which is charged with pre detention, arrest snd confiscation decision.
5. President, Prime minister, ministry of justices, and broucrats mobilized all together. Loyalist candidates for HCJP election were chosen, judicial union platform (YBP) created, funded by ministry of justice in terms of win the election.
6. Judges and prosecutors were threaten directly and indirectly to vote for YBP Candidates. Promotion, and salary increase promised to judges. Finally, judged who voted for YBP, promoted, and 15 percent salary increased for all judges and prosecutors.
7. They professionally used carrot and stick policy in order to win election. Public facilities were used for rallies to YBP for free charge. Turkish Airlines, Public vehicles, public employee were used like a YBP’s own sources.
8. Opponents including YARSAV member were profiled, and published in a twitter account called @kuscubasiesref, smear campaign launched against them. YARSAV is the oldest judges and prosecutors association, and wellknown secular and democratic opposition group of judges profiled by YBP during judicial election in 2014. The association was closed right after July 15 in accordance with the state of emergency law. Head of the association, Murat Arslan was arrested allagedly being member of terrorist organisation so called Parallel State.
9. Finally, YBP won the election with majority. It is the cornerstone event that the judiciary was owerwelmingly controlled by the government. In a 2014 report Human Rights Watch raised concerns about lack of independence of the judiciary in Turkey and about judicial decisions that appeared to be politicized and open to influence by powerful factions.
10. Pofiling judges has continued after election based on judges decision against YBP will.
11. More than 4000 judges (1 out of 3 of Judiciary) were profiled by YBP during the election, and after that.
12. As a result, about 4000 judges and prosecutors were arbitrarily expelled from its duty, assigned different regions, some are assigned more than twice in a year by new council.
13. It shows that judges were not targeted after failed military coup. They were already in President Erdogan’s bucket list. Here is some examples show the blacklist has prepared in advance;
13.1.Ahmet Biçer, a Balıkesir prosecutor who died back in May was suspended from his job by Judicial Council and issued detain warrant after 15 th July. http://turkeypurge.com/judicial-board-suspends-prosecutor-wh… http://www.haberturk.com/gundem/haber/1267592-yargiya-buyuk-… http://t24.com.tr/haber/hsyknin-darbe-girisimine-iliskin-aci… http://www.mynet.com/haber/guncel/aciga-alinan-hakim-savci-l…
13.2. Seyfettin Yiğit was blacklisted as an opponent (means not to support pro-ruling party association called YBP later YBD) at Judicial Election in 2014 and arrested after 15 th July 2016. http://tsjustice.info/wordpress/2016/09/18/turkish-judges-pr… Seyfettin Yiğit was found hanged on Sept.16. in Prison. http://turkeypurge.com/european-judges-urge-investigation-in….
13.3. A columnist from Sozcu Daily wrote in his article that the blacklist had been an organized old worksheed finished before failed military coup. http://turkeypurge.com/journalist-reveals-organizational-str…
13.4. HCJP (HSYK) Head of 2. Chamber, Mehmet Yılmaz accepts that the council dismissed 2740 judges and prosecutors the day after coup attempt. The list did not combined within a day. The council was working on it more than three years. http://t24.com.tr/haber/hsyk-2-daire-baskani-elimizdeki-feto…
14. 15 July coup gave a golden opportunity to Erdogan, he publicly expressed it is gift to him from God. On July 16, the day after the attempted coup, the Higher Council of Judges and Prosecutors issued a list of 2,745 judges and prosecutors who were to be suspended on the grounds that they were suspected of being “members of the Fethullah Gülen Terrorist Group/Parallel state structure (FETÖ/PDY).”
15. Right now, about 4000 of them including members of Supreme Courts, members of Judicial Council were dismissed, their salaries/assets were confiscated, passports were revoked, 3000 of them were detained, 2500 are still in jail, 680 judges are in solitary confinement in order to force them confess.
Here is the detail report shows the situation of Turkish Judiciary after July 15. http://tsjustice.info/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/R…
16. President Erdogan, HCJP Head of 2. Chamber President Mehmet Yılmaz and Ankara Chief Prosecutor Harun Kodalak made puclic statements respectively. Especially Mehmet Yılmaz and Harun Kodalak declared that if suspected criminals (judges and prosecutors allagedly linked to Parallel State) confess, and give some names to the public prosecutor, they will be free to go, and dismissed judges and prosecutors can start working in their profession again. http://hukukmedeniyeti.org/haber/12128/ankara-cumhuriyet-bas… https://www.turkishminute.com/2016/10/24/chief-public-prosec… utm_content=buffer4fc61&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer
17. Judges and prosecutors are arbitrarily jailed in a cell. Although they neither do break prisons rule, nor there are any court decision to put them in cell becuause of their linked to terrorist organisation. Solitary confinement punishment does not meet any criteria of 5275 Criminal Punishment Execution Code article 44 and 63. Judges and prosecutors hold in cell because of arbitrary order made by ministry of justice. Solitary confinement is defined as a mental torture by ECHR and EU as well. http://www.cpt.coe.int/en/annual/press/2011-11-10-eng.htm Here is the link dissmissed judges express his own experiences. http://diplomacyhdnwashington.blogspot.co.uk/2016/10/a-lette…
18.Solitary confinement is recently spreading all over the prisons, and getting much more common especially September and October. It is clearly understood from Mehmet Yilmaz, and Harun Kodalak’s statements that it is used for confession toll in terms of making pressure on judges and prosecutors.Those who remain judges are no longer independent, those who remain independent are no longer judges.
19. Although minisrty of justice denies there is no torture in Turkey, Human Rights Watch reports that there is mass human rights violation and torture in Turkey in post military coup era. It shows judges and prosecutors has become a target of torture in order to force them confess, and obtain evidences. https://www.hrw.org/news/2016/10/25/turkey-emergency-decrees…
20. HCJP vice president Mehmet Yılmaz unlawfully declared that some judges and prosecutors are Gulenist because he already has some files shows these judges and prosecutors had used an encrypted cell phone application called Bylock. It is a main evidence proves these judges have linked to FETO. Mehmet Yilmaz acted like a judges, although he has an obligation not to show his inclination in any judicial subject. He should have been suppose to act neutral in accordance with the law covers HCJP. Judges and prosecutors have been forced to confess they use Bylock. According to lawyers, there is any reasonable evidence showing judges and prosecutors had used this application. it is only evidence coming from National Intelligience Service showing a list of judges who are allegedly used the app. There is any explanation how they obtain this information. It is clear that this list does not meet legally acceptable evidence criteria based on criminal procedure act. CHP (Main Opposition Party) information, technology and communication department studied on a report, they found out that “…ByLock was a cell phone application, could be found in google and app store for a long time, anyone could access it. It can still found in some internet server to set up.” http://www.haberturk.com/gundem/haber/1307738-chp-bylock-rap…. In addition, Hatay 2. Felony Court, September 2016, made a decision, which ruled ByLock can not be an evidence of any crime by itself. http://turkeypurge.com/turkish-court-rejects-feto-indictment…
21. IMPLEMENTING SOLITARY CONFINEMENT AS A CONFESSION TOOL;
21.1. International human rights law is leglected in Turkey. Law enforcement first finds a criminal and then reach the evidence. Part of this understanding, judges and prosecutors declared as a criminal, jailed in a cell in order to obtain some evidence proving they are criminals, and member of FETO, and part of failured military coup.
21.2. It is clearly unlawfull. It can not be a credible evidence obtaining under psychological torture. Criminal Procedure Act 148. prohibits “asking confession and illegal promise”.
Article 148 – (1) The submissions of the suspect or accused shall be stemming from his own free will. Any bodily or mental intervention that would impair the free will, such as misconduct, torture, administering medicines or drugs, exhousting, falsification, physical coercion or threathening, using certain equipment, is forbidden.
(2) Any advantage that would be against the law shall not be promised.
(3) Submissions obtained through the forbidden procedures shall not be used as evidence, even if the individual had consented.
(4) Submissions obtained by the police, without the defense counsel being present, shall not be used as a basis for the judgment, unless this submission had been verified by the suspect or the accused in front of the judge or the court.
(5) In cases where there is a need for a subsequent interview of the suspect in relation with the same event, this interaction shall be conducted only by the public prosecutor.
21.3. Unlawfully submission, which were obtained within 30 days interrogation with outmost harsh prison condition, can not be deemed valid evidence unless suspected criminals accept this statement made by his own free will in court house in front of judges.
21.4. On the other hand, there is still a contradiction about confession. Vice president of HCJP declared that if the judges and prosecutors confess they are a member of terrorist organisation, and give further evidence in terms of combating FETO, they will return their profession. How someone can be a judge, who accepts he or she used to be a member of terrorist organisation?
22. To sum up, Mehmet Yılmaz ‘s statements purely a political statement, which try to justify unlawful implementation against independent judges, and prosecutors, who did not support pro government judges association (YBP) during 2014 Council Election in the name of combating military coup.
* The name of the author is kept secret for security reasons. The article is in it’s original version, it has not been edited by the blog editor.