Committee of Ministers in Strasbourg to also review Cyprus-related judgments

The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe starts Tuesday in Strasbourg a review of the implementation of judgments passed by the European Court of Human Rights, including Turkish-occupied property cases and missing persons in Cyprus.

At its previous session last December, the Committee of Ministers called on Turkey to abide by its unconditional obligation to pay the just satisfaction awarded by the Court in the “Xenides-Arestis v. Turkey” group of cases regarding property and in the “Varnava and others v. Turkey” on missing persons. The representatives of CoE member states further agreed to resume consideration of this issue at their present meeting, that will last until March 9.

Professor Andreas Orphanides, the applicant in the “Orphanides v. Turkey” case (part of the Xenides-Arestis group) sent a letter on Monday to the Secretariat, underlining “the failure of the respondent government” of Turkey to execute the judgment, and also the failure of the

Committee of Ministers to effectively supervise the judgments execution.

Orphanides also says that he is “deeply concerned about the future of human rights in Europe due to such failures of CoE member states to execute final judgments of the ECHR” and asks for more drastic and effective measures on Turkey.

Human rights lawyer Achilleas Demetriades, representing a number of applicants in the Xenides-Arestis group of cases, also sent letters to the Committee of Ministers last month and, speaking to CNA, he said that he asks for the intervention of the CoE Secretary-General to contribute in the execution of judgments.

Demetriades also repeated the offer by some of the applicants, last December, to withdraw their applications on a without prejudice and with full reservation of their rights, as long as Ankara paid the amounts awarded.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. So far, Ankara has not paid damages relating to certain cases concerning missing persons and property claims, awarded by the ECHR in Strasbourg to Cypriot applicants, for a number of violations committed in Cyprus during and after the 1974 Turkish invasion. In 2015, the Committee of Ministers invited the Secretary General to raise the issue of payment with the Turkish authorities.

Source: Cyprus News Agency