In the trial of sociologist Pinar Selek and four other defendants, life imprisonment has been demanded. They are accused of involvement in a bombing in Istanbul in 1998. Despite several independent expert opinions, which found that the explosion had been caused by an exploding gas cylinder in the Egyptian Bazaar, Pinar Selek was detained for two and a half years. She was released in December 2000.
Despite expert opinion to the contrary, the Public Prosecutor’s Office took the police report as the basis for renewing its demand in December 2005, seven years on, for life imprisonment for Pinar Selek and her codefendants. The trial is to continue on 17 May 2006.
What action does the Commission propose to take to prevent innocent persons from being sentenced to life imprisonment? How does the Commission propose to prevail upon Turkey’s judicial and political authorities to comply with the rule of law?