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Confidence-building measures before the next national elections in Turkey

Motion for a resolution | Doc. 12407 | 13 October 2010

Signatories:
Mr John AUSTIN, United Kingdom ; Ms Anne BRASSEUR, Luxembourg, ALDE ; Ms Lydie ERR, Luxembourg, SOC ; Mr Bill ETHERINGTON, United Kingdom ; Mr Andreas GROSS, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Ana GUŢU, Republic of Moldova, ALDE ; Mr Mike HANCOCK, United Kingdom, ALDE ; Mr Norbert HAUPERT, Luxembourg, EPP/CD ; Mr Jean HUSS, Luxembourg, SOC ; Ms Francine JOHN-CALAME, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Cecilia KEAVENEY, Ireland, ALDE ; Mr Albrecht KONEČNÝ, Austria, SOC ; Ms Elvira KOVÁCS, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Mr Tiny KOX, Netherlands, UEL ; Mr Jaakko LAAKSO, Finland, UEL ; Mr Bob LAXTON, United Kingdom ; Mr Frano MATUŠIĆ, Croatia, EPP/CD ; Ms Christine McCAFFERTY, United Kingdom ; Mr Ronan MULLEN, Ireland, EPP/CD ; Ms Elsa PAPADIMITRIOU, Greece, EPP/CD ; Mr Christos POURGOURIDES, Cyprus, EPP/CD ; Mr John PRESCOTT, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Marc SPAUTZ, Luxembourg, EPP/CD ; Ms Doris STUMP, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Elke TINDEMANS, Belgium ; Mr Imre VEJKEY, Hungary, EPP/CD ; Mr Konstantinos VRETTOS, Greece, SOC ; Ms Gisela WURM, Austria, SOC
Thesaurus

The next national elections in Turkey, to be held in May or June 2011, will be important for the country’s future development. The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe welcomes the recent contacts between the AKP Government and representatives of the Kurdish community, and also the efforts of CHP to develop a new policy regarding the Kurdish issue.

Nevertheless this Assembly believes that in the run-up to the elections more confidence-building measures should be taken, some of which will also need to be consolidated in constitutional reform in order to permit all parts of the Turkey’s population to exercise their human rights. The opinion of the Venice Commission should be sought and taken into account in formulation the reforms.

Such measures should include:

  • applying a ceasefire on both sides and creating an international supervision committee to investigate and report on possible breaches of the ceasefire;
  • taking all necessary steps to allow persons in prison or on trial for “normal” political activities to be active in politics;
  • lowering the 10% threshold in the electoral law in order to strengthen democracy;
  • starting to teach Kurdish language in state schools.

The Assembly calls on the Turkish Government to:

  • examine the principles laid down in the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities and in the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, with a view to signing, ratifying and applying these instruments;
  • reform local and regional government and introduce decentralisation in accordance with the European Charter of Local Self-Government, bearing in mind the pluralist nature of the population of Turkey.