The RAV is a German Association of Lawyers. Since its founding in 1979 the RAV has defended civil and human rights against governmental, economical or societal claims to power on a national and international level and worked towards a progressive development of the law.
We have followed the case against the Sociologist Pınar Selek accused of having placed a bomb in the Spice Market in Istanbul through reports from Human Rights Organisations as well as through information from our colleagues.
We are very concerned about the reversal of the acquittal of Pınar Selek by the Court of Cassation. We worry that the new trial will not meet the standards of a fair trial as guaranteed under Art. 6 of the European Convention of Human Rights, in particular since the Court of Cassation has given detailed and one-sided guidelines regarding the consideration of evidence and the length of the sentence:
1. Torture: The Court of Cassation has based its decision of February 9th, 2010 on an incriminatory witness statement which has been attained through torture. Because of this torture this main witness has revoked his statement before the court. However, this witness, who not only accused Pınar Selek but himself under torture, was binding acquitted of the same charge in 2006.
2. One-sided consideration of evidence: By finding that the explosion in the Spice Market was caused by a bomb the Court of Cassation has ignored the finding of the police in the days after the explosion and the many diverging expert statements and based its decision solely on one questionable expert statement.&