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Turkish (Turkiye)

[Gitmo's darkness] Time for change and enlightenment (2)

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Ömer Zarplı *

As an Amnesty International report released in November 2007 suggests, on Dec. 28, 2001, the “US Justice Department [advised] the Pentagon that holding foreign detainees in the non-sovereign territory of Guantanamo Bay should prevent habeas corpus review by US courts.”

Historically, the legal status of Guantanamo Bay was established in 1903 with a lease treaty between the US and Cuba. In that treaty, while Cuba retained its ultimate sovereignty, the US gained complete jurisdiction and control over Guantanamo and the area has effectively been American since 1903.

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Call for Fellowship Applications

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Call for Applications: Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellowships

Washington, D.C.

The Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows Program at the Washington, D.C. -based National Endowment for Democracy invites applications for fellowships in 2010-2011.

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Commissioner Hammarberg's latest Viewpoint

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Strasbourg, 17.08.2009 - “Closing the implementation gap between the rights proclaimed in human rights treaties and the reality in member states requires a systematic approach and meaningful indicators” said Thomas Hammarberg, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, in his latest Viewpoint published today.

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New HRW report; ‘They Want Us Exterminated'

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Iraqi militias are carrying out a spreading campaign of torture and murder against men suspected of homosexual conduct, or of not being "manly" enough, and Iraq authorities have done nothing to stop the killing, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Human Rights Watch called on Iraq's government to act urgently to rein in militia abuses, punish the perpetrators, and stop a new resurgence of violence that threatens all Iraqis' safety.

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International Day of the World’s Indigenous People

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(Statement by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay)

GENEVA -- The International Day of the World's Indigenous People is an opportunity to underline the importance of the rights of indigenous peoples and to pay tribute to the value and resilience of their cultures.

Since the introduction of the International Day by the UN General Assembly some fifteen years ago, we have achieved significant progress in our common efforts to advance the rights of indigenous peoples. This includes the adoption of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a genuine landmark in terms of human rights standards, and the launch of three UN mandates devoted to the rights of indigenous peoples. 

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Drinking Greek blood -- A good Turk is a dead Turk!

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Orhan Kemal CENGİZ

Last week I was in northern Cyprus on a short vacation. As I had done before, I read the daily newspaper Afrika every day during my stay on the island. Afrika is a highly readable newspaper, and it represents the fiercest opposition to the nationalist status quo in northern Cyprus.

Their ironic name is a reminder of what happened to them in the past. Before their printing house and buildings were bombed in 2001, their name was Avrupa (Europe). They changed their name to Afrika (Africa) to protest, in their own words, "the law of the jungle that rules northern Cyprus.”

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The ugly truth about the Kurdish question -- the Armenian question!?

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Orhan Kemal CENGİZ

If we could discuss the Armenian question openly, if we could confront the Armenian tragedy, there would not have been a Kurdish question. We are far from understanding the Armenian question, yet can we be close to solving the Kurdish question?

To answer this, we need to look at how the Kurdish question emerged in the first place. The same state “problem solving” mentality was in work for both the Armenian and Kurdish questions.

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State budgets reveal whether the government is committed to human rights

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Strasbourg, 03.08.2009 – “The current economic crisis has made it particularly important to screen state budgets for their compliance with human rights” said Thomas Hammarberg, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, in his latest Viewpoint published today. “The allocation of resources will affect human rights protection - including gender equality, children’s rights and the situation of old or disabled persons, migrants and other groups which risk being disadvantaged. The way state revenues are obtained will also have an influence on justice and fairness in society; in this regard no tax system is neutral.”

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Prisoners’ Right to Education

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We cannot imprison a person for many years without providing an avenue for change… Indeed change will have occurred but certainly not how it was envisioned. For we will have created an envious, frustrated, delusional, pent-up, angry and de-humanized individual who will certainly seek revenge.”

These words come from a prisoner interviewed by the Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Vernor Muñoz for his recent report to the Human Rights Council on access to education in prisons.

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Open Letter to Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of the Rebublic of Turkey

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Ongoing arbitrary detention of 32 trade union leaders

Dear Mr. Prime Minister,

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH), wishes to express its deep concern about the ongoing arbitrary detention of 32 leaders of the Confederation of Public Employees’ Trade Unions (KESK) and of its affiliates, including the teachers’ trade union Egitim-Sen.

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[Gitmo's darkness] Time for change and enlightenment (1)

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Ömer Zarplı*

Within days of taking office, US President Barack Obama issued an executive order to close down the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, where, as part of the war on terror, suspected terrorists have been held indefinitely without charge or trial since 2002.

Moreover, the president suspended the military commission proceedings in Guantanamo and argued that instead of military commissions, he would prefer federal courts or the military justice system prosecute detainees in Guantanamo.

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