ECHR Orders Turkey to Pay Damages to 9 Publications

BIANET 31.1.2013 – ECHR  – found Turkey guilty for suspending the publication and distribution of 9 newspapers and magazines between 2008 and 2009, ordering the Turkish state to pay applicants a total of 13,500 euros.

ECHR found Turkey guilty for suspending the publication and distribution of 9 newspapers and magazines (Bağımsız Demokrasi Sosyalizm İçin Yürüyüş, Ezilenlerin Sosyalist Alternatifi Atılım, Özgür Mezopotamya, Günlük, Siyasi Alternatif, Özgür Görüş, Süreç, Rojev and Demokratik Açılım) on various dates between 30 March 2008 and 3 December 2009, for periods ranging from fifteen days to one month.

The court ordered Turkish government to pay applicants a total of 13,500 euros for violating Article 10 (freedom expression) of European Declaration of Human Rights.

The Court reminded that it has already examined a similar complaint and found a violation of Article 10 of the Convention in the case of Ürper and Others (October 23, 2009), where it noted in particular that the practice of banning the future publication of entire periodicals went beyond any notion of “necessary” restraint in a democratic society and, instead, amounted to censorship.

Article 10 – Freedom of expression

1. Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. This article shall not prevent States from requiring the licensing of broadcasting, television or cinema enterprises. 2. The exercise of these freedoms, since it carries with it duties and responsibilities, may be subject to such formalities, conditions, restrictions or penalties as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society, in the interests of national security, territorial integrity or public safety, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, for the protection of the reputation or rights of others, for preventing the disclosure of information received in confidence, or for maintaining the authority and impartiality of the judiciary. (EA/BM)