* Photograph: Anadolu Agency
Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has given an interview to the Germany-based Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper and addressed a series of issues including the ruling of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) on Selahattin Demirtaş and the resolution process.
Regarding the judgement of the ECtHR, which announced its ruling on November 20 that the pre-trial detention of Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) former Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş shall be immediately ended, Minister Çavuşoğlu has made the following remarks:
“First of all, the ECtHR gave a different ruling on Selahattin Demirtaş before. Secondly, in my opinion, the judgement of the court is a political one. Judiciary should not do something like that. We will appeal to the Grand Chamber of the ECtHR against the judgement.
“Thirdly, there are several European Union (EU) countries that do not implement the rulings of the ECtHR. For instance, despite the related ruling of the ECtHR, the Turkish minority in Greece still cannot use Turkish names while naming their associations. Athens has not been implementing this judgement for 10 years. Is anyone exerting any pressure on Greece?”
Emphasizing that the “real issue here is law and its practice rather than politics”, Çavuşoğlu has stated, “Though Demirtaş does not have a direct membership of the terrorist organization PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party), he still does not hide his support for it.”
Statement on “resolution process”
In his interview, Çavuşoğlu has also referred to the negotiations made in the resolution process by saying, “It came to nothing and it seems that it will also not be of any use in the future, either.”
Adding that the resolution process was abused, Çavuşoğlu has stated, “The resolution process was abused by terrorists. They wanted to increase their representation not only in the mountains, but, in the cities as well. They abstained from laying down their arms and killed a vast number of civilians.”
“Indictment should be immediately issued”
Being reminded that the indictment against Anadolu Kültür Executive Board Chair, rights defender and businessperson Osman Kavala has not been issued yet, Müvlüt Çavuşoğlu has said,
“Let the judiciary do its job. But, I give you right in something: the indictment should be immediately issued. The period of detention should be shortened. We are currently working for it. The Ministry of Justice will introduce a reform package in mid-December. (AS/SD)