(Application no. 21831/03)
13 October 2009
This judgment will become final in the circumstances set out in Article 44 § 2 of the Convention. It may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Uzunget and Others v. Turkey,
The European Court of Human Rights (Second Section), sitting as a Chamber composed of:
Ireneu Cabral Barreto,
Kristina Pardalos, judges,
and Françoise Elens-Passos, Deputy Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 22 September 2009,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
I. THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE CASE
II. RELEVANT DOMESTIC LAW AND PRACTICE
“Anyone who has never been sentenced ... to a penalty other than a fine and is sentenced to ... a fine ... and/or a [maximum] term of one year's imprisonment may have his [her] sentence suspended if the court is satisfied that [the offender], having regard to his [her] criminal record and criminal tendencies, will not reoffend if [the] sentence is thus suspended ...”
“Criminal cases which concern crimes that normally fall under the jurisdiction of the regular courts and are committed by minors who are not yet eighteen years of age shall be examined by the juvenile courts.”
“Everyone has the right to hold unarmed and peaceful meetings and demonstration marches without prior permission. ...
The formalities, conditions, and procedures governing the exercise of the right to hold meetings and demonstration marches shall be prescribed by law.”
“In order for a meeting to take place, the governor's office or authorities of the district in which the demonstration is planned must be informed, during opening hours and at least seventy-two hours prior to the meeting, by a notice containing the signature of all the members of the organising board...”
“The police may use firearms:
(a) in self defence, ...
(h) or if a person or a group resists the police and prevents them from carrying out their duties or if there is an attack against the police.”
“In cases of resistance by persons whose arrest is necessary or by groups whose dispersal is necessary or of an attack or threat of an attack, the police may use violence to subdue these actions.
Use of violence refers to the use of bodily force, physical force and all types of weapons specified in the law and gradually increases according to the nature and level of resistance and attack in such a way as to restore calm.
In cases of intervention by group forces, the extent of the use of force and the equipment and instruments to be used shall be determined by the commander of the intervening force.”
I. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 6 OF THE CONVENTION
“In the determination of ... any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair ... hearing ... by [a] ... tribunal ...”
A. Alleged breach of the applicants' right to adversarial proceedings
B. Alleged unfairness of the proceedings as a result of the police officers' intimidation
C. The trial of Rıza Altuntov
II. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLES 9, 10 AND 11 OF THE CONVENTION
“1. Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and to freedom of association with others, including the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.
2. No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of these rights other than such as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of ... public safety [or] for the prevention of disorder...”
1. Whether there was an interference with the exercise of the freedom of peaceful assembly
2. Whether the interference was justified
III. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 14 OF THE CONVENTION
IV. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION
“If the Court finds that there has been a violation of the Convention or the Protocols thereto, and if the internal law of the High Contracting Party concerned allows only partial reparation to be made, the Court shall, if necessary, afford just satisfaction to the injured party.”
– Sinan Cem Uzunget claimed 50,500 euros (EUR) in respect of pecuniary and EUR 100,000 for non-pecuniary damage. He further requested a re-trial by the domestic courts in the event that the Court should find a violation, the deletion of his criminal record and his reinstatement to his post in the public service.
i) Alaattin Uğraş claimed EUR 48,977 in respect of pecuniary and EUR 50,000 for non-pecuniary damage.
ii) İsmail Temizyürek claimed EUR 47,000 in respect of pecuniary and EUR 50,000 for non-pecuniary damage.
iii) The remaining applicants, Rıza Altuntov, Emre Altun, Hikmet Gökçe, Kazım Savcı, Nazime Karakaya, Zeynep Şeker, Leyla Mahi Uğraş, Songül Ergül, Esma Seviş, Fatma Özcelik and Hüseyin Bolat each claimed an award only for non-pecuniary damage in the amount of EUR 10,000.
B. Costs and expenses
C. Default interest
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT UNANIMOUSLY
(a) that the respondent State is to pay each of the applicants, within three months from the date on which the judgment becomes final in accordance with Article 44 § 2 of the Convention, EUR 1,000 (one thousand euros), plus any tax that may be chargeable, in respect of non pecuniary damage, to be converted into Turkish liras at the rate applicable at the date of settlement;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amount at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points;
Done in English, and notified in writing on 13 October 2009, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.