AKEL MEP Neoklis Sylikiotis raises the right of the Turkishcypriot Haluk Selam Tufanli to conscientious objection before the European Commission
Statement of AKEL MEP and GUE/NGL Vice-President Neoklis Sylikiotis
5th December 2014, Brussels
The Turkish Cypriot Haluk Selam Tufanli is a conscientious objector and refused to serve the occupation army with his participation in the annual obligatory military exercises conducted in the territories of the Republic of Cyprus under the occupation of Turkey. As a result of his decision in 2011 not to take part in war preparations (as a reservist) since 5th November 2013 he was been in an ongoing trial until 4th December 2014 where the so-called military “court” of the pseudo-state in the occupied areas sentenced him to 10 days imprisonment.
The right to refuse military service is enshrined in the European Charter of Human Rights and conscientious objectors have the possibility of doing an alternative service. However, Haluk Selam Tufanli was sentenced by the occupational authorities to prison.
This issue was raised before the European Commission by Neoklis Sylikiotis AKEL MEP and Vice-President of the Group of the European United Left-Nordic Green Left GUE/NGL, when he put the question whether the EU intends to denounce this incident, which, as he underlined, constitutes a violation of the human rights of a person who refused to serve the occupation army. In addition, the AKEL MEP called on the European Commission to give an answer whether it intends to make representations to the Turkish Government.
In the question he sent to the European Commission, AKEL MEP Neoklis Sylikiotis stressed that in the occupied areas of Cyprus, people are tried in a military court and the police are under the control of the Turkish army, whilst the whole area is under the control of the Turkish occupation army.
Intervention of Georgos Koukoumas, member of the C.C. of AKEL and the International Relations Department, at the Hearing “Palestine: What’s Next?” organized by GUE/NGL2015-07-1
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