AS TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF
Application no. 27794/02
The European Court of Human Rights (Second Section), sitting on 15 November 2005 as a Chamber composed of:
Mr J.-P. Costa, President,
Mr A.B. Baka,
Mr I. Cabral Barreto,
Mr R. Türmen,
Mr V. Butkevych,
Ms D. Jočienė,
Mr D. Popović, judges,
and Mrs S. Dollé, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 12 April 2002,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicant, the Confederation of Public Employees’ Trade Unions (Kamu Emekçileri Sendikaları Konfederasyonu - the “KESK”), is represented before the Court by Mr Fevzi Gümüş, Mr Metin Ayhan and Mr Akay Sayılır, lawyers practising in Ankara.
The facts of the case, as submitted by the applicant, may be summarised as follows.
In 2001 the Turkish Parliament prepared a draft bill to amend the Act on Trade Unions. While this draft was being discussed before Parliament, the “KESK” organised a meeting in a park in Ankara to protest against the draft. The aim was to draw public attention to, and to achieve the withdrawal of this bill, which in their view did not meet international standards.
On 25 June 2001 members of the applicant confederation gathered in Kızılay. While speeches were made, the police intervened to disperse the group. The officers verbally warned the group that the meeting was illegal since no permission had been obtained from the relevant authorities pursuant to Law No. 2911 on meetings and demonstrations. The police officers then used truncheons, sticks and tear gas bombs to disperse the crowd. Several participants were wounded during the incident.
On an unspecified date, the applicant and the injured persons filed a complaint with the Ankara public prosecutor against the Governor of Ankara, the Ankara Chief of Police and the police officers who were involved in the incident.
Pursuant to Law No. 4483 on the prosecution of civil servants, in order to be able to initiate criminal proceedings, the public prosecutor transferred the file to the Ministry of the Interior for authorisation.
On 9 October 2001 the Ministry of Interior sent a letter to the public prosecutor and, relying on Article 4 of Law No. 4483, requested that no action be taken against the accused persons. The Ministry considered that the force used by the police had been justified and lawful in the circumstances of the case. In the letter, it was stated the officers had had a duty to disperse the demonstrators who had organised an illegal meeting. Consequently, on 29 January 2002 the Ankara public prosecutor decided to take no action concerning the complaint.
The applicant complains about the treatment to which its members were subjected on 25 June 2001. In this respect, Article 3 of the Convention is invoked.
The applicant alleges that the right to the liberty and security of its members was breached as no criminal proceedings were initiated against the police officers, the Chief of Police or the Governor.
The applicant alleges under Article 7 of the Convention that it was sanctioned because of an act which did not constitute a criminal offence.
Under Article 6 and 13 of the Convention, the applicant complains that there was no effective remedy in respect of the complaints of ill-treatment.
Under Article 10 and 11 of the Convention, the applicant alleges that the police interference in the meeting constituted a breach of its right to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly.
Finally, without giving any specific reasons, the applicant invokes Articles 14 and 17 of the Convention.
1. The applicant confederation maintains that its members were subjected to treatment contrary to Article 3 of the Convention. Furthermore, invoking Articles 6 and 13 of the Convention, it maintains that its right to an effective remedy was breached.
Under Article 5 of the Convention, the applicant confederation refers to the fact that no criminal proceedings were initiated against the police officers, the Chief of Police or the Governor, and alleges that the right to the liberty and security of its members was breached.
The Court recalls that the word “victim” in the context of Article 34 of the Convention denotes the person who is directly affected by the act or omission which is at issue.
In the instant case, the applicant, as a confederation, complains about the treatment of its members, but has failed to submit any evidence to show that it has been directly affected by these alleged Convention breaches. In this connection, the Court notes that several of its members have lodged their own individual applications with the Court on the subject.
In these circumstances, the Court concludes that the applicant confederation cannot be considered to be a direct victim of the alleged violations and therefore does not have standing to bring these complaints before the Court. This part of the application should be rejected for being incompatible ratione personae with the provisions of the Convention, within the meaning of Article 35 §§ 3 and 4.
2. The applicant alleges under Article 7 of the Convention that it was sanctioned because of an act which did not constitute a criminal offence.
The Court observes that no criminal proceedings were brought against the applicant for organising the meeting of 25 June 2001 and, as such, it has not been found guilty of any offence.
This complaint should therefore be rejected for being incompatible ratione materiae with the provisions of the Convention, within the meaning of Article 35 §§ 3 and 4.
3. The applicant alleges under Articles 10 and 11 of the Convention that the police interference in the meeting of 25 June 2001 constituted a breach of its right to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly.
The Court observes that the essence of the applicant’s complaint concerns the alleged interference with its right of peaceful assembly, and it should therefore be examined from the standpoint of Article 11 alone.
The Court considers that it cannot, on the basis of the case file, determine the admissibility of this complaint and that it is therefore necessary, in accordance with Rule 54 § 2 (b) of the Rules of Court, to give notice of it to the respondent Government.
4. Without giving any specific reasons, the applicant invokes Articles 14 and 17 of the Convention.
The Court observes that the applicant has not substantiated its allegations and has failed to lay the basis of an arguable claim of a breach of these provisions.
It follows that this part of the application is to be rejected as being manifestly ill-founded, pursuant to Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Decides to adjourn the examination of the applicant’s complaint concerning Article 11 of the Convention;
Declares the remainder of the application inadmissible.
S. Dollé J.-P.
KESK v. TURKEY DECISION
KESK v. TURKEY DECISION