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Main Page :- Articles :- European Commission of Human Rights - Cyprus v. Turkey - Commission Report, 10 July 1976

 

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Chapter 2 - Deprivation  of Liberty

Introduction

213.        The Commission will deal with the allegations in the two applications concerning the deprivation of liberty of Greek Cypriots by the Turkish armed forces in Cyprus in the following order:

-         the alleged general deprivation of liberty of that part of the Greek Cypriot population which remained in the north of Cyprus after the military action of Turkey ("Enclaved persons");

-         the alleged deprivation of liberty of Greek Cypriot civilians who, according to the applicant Government were concentrated in certain villages in the north, in particular Gypsou, Marathovouno, Morphou, Vitsada and Voni, or in the Dome Hotel at Kyrenia ("Detention centres");

-         the deprivation of liberty of persons referred to as "prisoners and detainees" in the intercommunal agreements, including persons detained in the mainland of Turkey or at Pavlides Garage and Saray Prison in the Turkish sector of Nicosia ("Prisoners and detainees").

214.        As stated above [289] the Commission will not consider as separate issues the applicant Government's allegations concerning deprivation of liberty of Greek Cypriots arrested at the demarcation line.

A. "Enclaved persons"

I.         Submissions of the Parties

(1)         Applicant  Government

215.        The applicant Government alleged generally that the Turkish armed forces were arbitrarily detaining a great number of Greek Cypriot civilians of all ages and both sexes in the north of Cyprus [290].

216.        They described the enclaved population as a whole as being at the mercy of the Turkish forces, as hostages not allowed to move from their "places of detention". [291].

217.        In the Government's view the remaining enclaved Creek Cypriot inhabitants in the north of Cyprus (about 9,000) were virtually under detention because, though allowed to move to the south [292],they were not allowed freedom of movement in the north. They were subjected to a curfew between 9.00 p.m. and 6.00 a.m., were not allowed to go to their fields unless they obtained special permission and, in any case, they were not allowed to move from one village to another. The enclaved persons were under the continuous supervision of the Turkish authorities. In particular the ex-prisoners who had been detained in Turkey and were now residing in the Turkish-occupied areas were forced to present themselves to the police twice a day. Many of them were arrested for interrogation or put in prison for reasons such as failure to salute members of the Turkish army [293].

(2)         Respondent Government

218.        The respondent Government who, for the reasons stated above [294], did not take part in the proceedings on the merits, have not made any statements with regard to these allegations.

II.         Relevant Article of the Convention

219.        The Commission considers that the restrictions imposed on the liberty of the so-called enclaved persons in the north of Cyprus, as complained of in the present applications, may raise issues under Art. 5 of the Convention. It notes in this connection the applicant Government's view that the enclaved persons "could virtually be described as being under detention" [295].

220.        Art. 5 of the Convention reads as follows:

"1.         Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be deprived of his liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure prescribed by law:

(a)         the lawful detention of a person after conviction by a competent court;

(b)         the lawful arrest or detention of a person for non-compliance with the lawful order of a court or in order to secure the fulfilment of any obligation prescribed by law;

(c)         the lawful arrest or detention of a person effected for the purpose of bringing him before the competent legal authority on reasonable suspicion of having committed an offence or when it is reasonably considered necessary to prevent his committing an offence or fleeing after having done so;

(d)         the detention of a minor by lawful order for the purpose of educational supervision or nis lawful detention for the purpose of bringing him before the competent legal authority;

(e)         the lawful detention of persons for the prevention of the spreading' of infectious diseases, of persons of unsound mind, alcoholics or drug addicts or vagrants;

(f)         the lawful arrest or detention of a person to prevent his effecting an unauthorised entry into the country or of a person against whom action is being taken with a view to deportation or extradition.

2.         Everyone who is arrested shall be informed promptly, in a language which he understands, of the reasons for his arrest and of any charge against him.

3.         Everyone arrested or detained in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 1 (c) of this Article shall be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorised by law to exercise judicial power and shall be entitled to trial within a reasonable time or to release pending trial. Release may be conditioned by guarantees to appear for trial.

4.         Everyone who is deprived of his liberty by arrest or detention shall be entitled to take proceedings by which the lawfulness of his detention shall be decided speedily by a court and his release ordered if the detention is not lawful.

5.         Everyone who has been the victim of arrest or detention in contravention of the provisions of this Article shall have an enforceable right to compensation."

III.         Evidence obtained

221.        It is common knowledge that a fraction of the Greek Cypriot population of northern Cyprus remained there after the Turkish military operation. Their number was, according to UN documents about 15,000 in December 1974 [296], and about 10,500 (plus some 1,000 Maronites) in June 1975 [297].

222.        According to a progress report of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees of 31 0ctober 1974 [298], among the 15,000 Greek Cypriots then in the north of Cyprus there were about 7,000 to 8,000 who had been by-passed by military operations and were still living in their own villages, mostly in Northern Karpasia; the economic life of the people in these villages was disrupted but their situation was better than that of other Greek Cypriots in the northern area who had either been re-grouped in churches, schools, hotels or other public buildings, or were isolated in their own villages [299].

223.        It appears from further UN reports that most of the enclaved persons who remained in the north of Cyprus until June 1975 were still in their own homes while the majority of other persons who had been detained in various forms had already been transferred to the area controlled by the applicant Government [300]. It was also reported that the enclaved persons lived in difficult conditions with restrictions on their movement outside their own village areas. Owing to the disruption of the economy they were in need of assistance which was provided by the applicant Government and delivered regularly by UNFICYP [301]. The humanitarian teams who had access to the Greek Cypriot villages in the north of Cyprus had to be accompanied by Turkish liaison officers. Efforts of UNFICYP to establish observation posts in the vicinity of Greek Cypriot villages and to arrange patrols in order to ensure the security of Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus, in a similar way as it did in respect of Turkish Cypriot enclaves in the south, were unsuccessful [302].

224.        Some information concerning the living conditions of enclaved Greek Cypriots was given by witnesses to the Commission's Delegation.

The Commission here notes in particular the evidence given by witness Stylianou, a schoolteacher and chairman of the "Pancyprian Committee of Enclaved Persons". He stated that this private association had collected information concerning the enclaved persons from various sources, including the statements of persons who had been able to leave the northern area, and letters written by enclaved persons to their relatives in the south [303].

225.        According to the witness, there were approximately 8,000 Greek Cypriots enclaved in the Karpasia area, 2,000 in the Kyrenia district and some hundred in other areas [304]. It appears that these figures also include persons in detention centres which will be dealt with separately [305].

The witness stated [306] that a curfew prevented the enclaved persons from leaving their homes during the day hours, from 6.00 a. m. until 9.00 p.m. "in the Turkish area", and until 8.00 p.m."in Greek areas". The enclaved persons were not allowed to travel between one village and another, or to go beyond a certain distance (1 km or 1 mile) from their homes; they were not even allowed to go to their fields in order to work there [307]. The same restrictions applied throughout the area controlled by the Turkish forces, but there were additional restrictions in the Kyrenia district, where Greek Cypriots were not allowed to leave their houses or to go on their verandahs. In Kyrenia city they needed escorts even to go to the church, and sometimes escorts were refused. Thus, Greek Cypriots in Kyrenia were not able to buy meat for about a month because they were refused escorts to the market. The witness considered that most Greek Cypriots in the Kyrenia area would like to leave and come to the south, while those in Karpasia, owing to the fact that they were not ill-treated, would stay for the time being in order to see what solution would be reached [308].

226.        Witness Stylianou further stated [309] that those Greek Cypriots who were allowed to return to the area controlled by Turkish forces pursuant to the provisions of the intercommunal agreement of August 1975 concerning the reunification of families [310] were, in fact, going back to a curfew. They were willing to do so in order to join their families, to look after their properties,and because they believed that the Karpasia area would eventually be returned to the Greek Cypriots, so that they could hope to be free after some months.

227.        0f the witnesses heard by the Commission's Delegation, only one remained for a considerable time in the area controlled by the Turkish forces: Dr Charalambides, former Deputy Mayor of Kyrenia, who took refuge in the Dome Hotel where he remained until 5 April 1975. As a physician he was allowed to leave the hotel escorted by a Turkish Cypriot policeman in order to see his patients [311]. Thus he could give a description not only of the conditions of Greek Cypriots in the Dome Hotel [312], but also of the living conditions of Greek Cypriots in the town of Kyrenia. He stated [313] that about 200 of them stayed in Upper Kyrenia in their own homes until April 1975 when he left. The relations between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots in that neighbourhood which comprised Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots had been traditionally good, and remained so after the Turkish military action. The Greek Cypriots there were protected by their Turkish Cypriot neighbours. They were allowed to go into the street and to shop up to 9 o'clock in the evening.

The witness further stated that apart from the Greek Cypriots in the Dome Hotel and those in Upper Kyrenia no Greek Cypriots remained in the town.

228.        Other witnesses heard by the Delegation could only give fragmentary information about the enclaved Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus.

Witness Hadjiloizou stated that pressure was exerted upon some influential persons in the Karpasia area by stating that they were under suspicion of the possession of weapons, or of keeping contacts with persons who were hiding in the mountains etc. [314]. Witness Odysseos spoke of the situation of the remaining population of Morphou before they were transferred to the detention centre in the school in September 1974. He said there were searches, even during the night, in order to check their presence, and ill-treatments [315]. Witness Iacovou was unable to explain any particular purpose of keeping Greek Cypriots under restrictions as enclaved persons. He said the Turkish forces had found them in the area under their control and considered that they used them later to extract some political advantage, e.g. when they started to expel them they thereby exerted pressure upon the applicant Government to allow the transfer of Turkish Cypriots to the north [316].

229.        Written statements submitted by the applicant Government contain the following information about general restrictions imposed on the enclaved population:

-         A gardener of Vassily, Famagusta district, who had remained there until 30 June 1975 is recorded as having stated:

"Most of the Greek Cypriots who are still in the Turkish occupied areas are terrified; they cannot move freely and they cannot go from one village to another without permission." [317]

-         A married woman from Yialousa is recorded as having stated that in August 1974 a curfew was imposed from 6.00 p.m. to 6.00 a.m. daily which was still in force in February 1975 when she left [318].

IV.         Evaluation of the evidence

230.        The Commission has not been able, on the basis of the evidence before it, to establish a clear picture of the living conditions of the so-called enclaved Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus in so far as they were not subjected to special measures of detention [319]. The evidence obtained from witnesses is fragmentary and partly contradictory, in particular with regard to the hours and other conditions of the curfew. Moreover, it is almost exclusively hearsay evidence with the exception of the evidence of Dr Charalambides in respect of conditions in Upper Kyrenia [320]. The sparse information contained in UN documents and written statements submitted is not sufficient to complete the picture. The only findings which can be arrived at with some degree of certainty are:

(a)         that there has been a curfew involving confinement to houses, as a rule during the night hours, for the Greek Cypriot population in the north of Cyprus;

(b)         that restrictions have been imposed on the freedom of movement of Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus outside their villages.

231.        The exact conditions of the curfew and its application [321] as well as the scope and application of the restrictions on the movement of persons outside villages have not been further investigated. The Commission observes in this connection that investigations would have had to be carried out in the north of Cyprus to which access has not been granted to its Delegation.

V.         Responsibility of Turkey under the Convention

232.        Since the Commission has not been able to establish all the relevant facts with regard to the present allegations, it is also unable to determine to what extent the treatment of the enclaved Greek Cypriot population is imputable to Turkey under the Convention. In particular it has not established whether the curfew and restrictions of movement were proclaimed by the Turkish military authorities, or by the Turkish Cypriot Administration - either on their own initiative or on instructions of the Turkish authorities.

233.        However, on the basis of the evidence before it, the Commission finds indications that the restrictions of movement and, to a lesser degree, the curfew, were enforced with the assistance of the Turkish army: while reference to members of the Turkish Cypriot police are frequent in statements concerning searches and controls which were carried out during night-time, it seems that the movement of persons between Villages was more closely controlled by the Turkish armed forces. Such control confirms that the persons concerned were under the jurisdiction of Turkey within the meaning of Art. 1 of the Convention.

VI.         Conclusions

234.        The Commission has examined the general restrictions imposed on the liberty of Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus in the light of the provisions of Art. 5 of the Convention [322]. In this connection it has also noted the provisions of Art. 2 of Protocol No 4 to the Convention according to which everybody lawfully within the territory of a State has the right to liberty  of movement within that territory.

235.        The Commission, by eight-votes against five votes and with two abstentions, first considers that, on the basis of the evidence before it [323], it is sufficiently informed to draw the conclusion that the curfew imposed at night on enclaved Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus, while a restriction of liberty is not a deprivation of liberty, within the meaning of Art. 5 (I) of the Convention.

236.        The Commission, by twelve votes with two abstentions, further considers that, on the basis of the evidence before it [324], it is sufficiently informed to draw the conclusion that the alleged restrictions of movement outside the built-up area of villages in the north of Cyprus would fall within the scope of Art. 2 of Protocol No 4, which has not been ratified by either Cyprus or Turkey, rather than within the scope of Art. 5 of the Convention. The Commission is therefore unable to find a violation of Art. 5 of the Convention in so far as the restrictions imposed on Greek Cypriots in order to prevent them from moving freely outside villages in the north of Cyprus are imputable to Turkey.

B. "Detention centres"

I.         Submissions of the Parties

(1)         Applicant Government

237.        The applicant Government submitted that in the north of Cyprus the Turkish armed forces detained thousands of persons arbitrarily and with no lawful authority [325]; they stated that this detention occurred essentially in certain "concentration camps", the worst of which were Voni, Marathovouno, Vitsada and Gypsou [326].

238.        The Government first alleged that, on entering any inhabited area, the Turkish forces at once arrested the Greek Cypriot inhabitants and detained them because they were Greeks: the same course was followed in respect of any Greek Cypriot met on the way of the invading army [327].

According to the Government, those who were not detained as prisoners-of-war [328]; i.e. women, children and old men, were put in "concentration camps", if they were not expelled [329]. In those camps hundreds of persons from small babies to old people of 90 were kept in small spaces under bad conditions without sanitary facilities [330] and were not allowed to move out. Detainees were often moved from one concentration area to another and regrouped [331].

239.        The applicant Government also complained of the detention by the Turkish authorities of some 3,000 inhabitants of the Kyrenia district in the Kyrenia Dome Hotel and in Bellapais village. They stated that most of these persons were arrested in their houses by the Turkish army and transported to the said places of detention. The rest were forced during the first days of the invasion to take refuge there. In November 1974 the Turkish military authorities continued to detain about 450 of those persons at the Dome Hotel and 1,000 at Bellapais. The detainees were not allowed to move from their places of detention to their nearby houses [332].

240.        In their second application the applicant Government submitted that additional concentration camps had been established for the purpose of the detention of Greek Cypriot civilians in the north of Cyprus [333].

They distinguished between the additional "concentration camp" at Morphou established after the filing of the first application, and other places of detention including:

-         the Dome Hotel in Kyrenia - 53 detainee;

-         Lapithos (Kyrenia) - about 150 detainees;

-         Larnaca of Lapithos (Kyrenia) - about 30 detainees;

-         Trikomo (Famagusta) - about 120 detainees;

-         Kondemenos (Kyrenia) - about 8 detainees;

-         Kalopsida (Famagusta) - about 10 detainees;

-         Spathariko (Famagusta) - about 9 detainees [334].

It was further stated that the Morphou concentration camp was gradually evacuated so that there remained only about 30 detainees by March 1975, and only 12 by July 1975, and that the detainees in the last three of the detention places above were expelled to the Government controlled areas in the summer of 1975 [335].

(2)         Respondent Government

241.        The respondent Government who, for the reasons stated above [336], did not take part in the proceedings on the merits, have not made any statements with regard to the above allegations.

II.         Relevant Articles of the Convention

242.        The Commission considers that the above allegations concerning the concentration of Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus in certain detention centres raise issues under Art. 5 of the Convention [337]. The question whether the conditions of this confinement raise issues under Art. 3 of the Convention will be dealt with separately [338].

III.         Evidence obtained

243.        It appears from the evidence before the Commission that, besides a fraction of the Greek Cypriot population in the north of Cyprus who had been by-passed by the military events of 1974 and continued to live in their villages in the said territory as "enclaved persons", i.e. under a curfew and restrictions imposed upon their freedom of movement within that territory [339], there was a considerable number of Greek Cypriots, scattered over the area more directly affected by the Turkish military action, who were originally also "enclaved", but who were soon subjected to a status of strict confinement in certain locations.

244.        The evidence shows that these locations included:

(a)         larger detention centres in schools and churches, where several hundred persons were kept, in particular in the villages of Gypsou, Marathovouno, Vitsada, Voni and, somewhat later, Morphou [340];

(b)         private houses, where smaller groups of persons were confined [341];

(c)         the Dome Hotel at Kyrenia, where Greek Cypriots were originally under UN protective custody (a similar situation existed in the village of Bellapais) [342].

245.        The persons kept in any of these locations were not included in the category of "prisoners or detainees" referred to in the intercommunal agreements and in UN documents. They were, however, repeatedly mentioned in these instruments as a separate group of persons, in particular in connection with arrangements for their transfer to the south of Cyprus [343].

246.        The evidence concerning the character of confinement in each category of the above locations will be set out separately in the following paragraphs.

(a)         Confinement to detention centres established  in schools and churches

247.        The Commission has already found that many Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus were moved from their places of residence to other places within the territory controlled by the Turkish army [344]. It has found that many civilians were either brought to, or ordered to gather at certain central assembly points in their respective villages, usually the school or the church [345]. While most of these assembly points appear to have, been of a temporary character [346], some became more permanent places of detention to which also Greek Cypriots from the surrounding villages were brought.

248.        0n the basis of the material before it the Commission has not been able to establish en exhaustive list of these detention centres. It observes that the five villages Voni, Marathovouno, Vitsada, Gypsou and Morphou to which most of the evidence is related were usually cited by way of exemplification, presupposing that there were other places where similar conditions prevailed. Such other places, however, have not been identified and it was thus not possible to investigate the conditions of confinement existing there. The Commission must therefore limit its findings to the five centres mentioned above.

249.        UN documents concerning these centres include:

-         a report of the Secretary General of 18 September 1974 according to which "Greek Cypriots have been gathered into a number of centralised locations. The principal areas are at Gypsos (Famagusta district), 500, Marathovouno (Famagusta district), 400, and Voni (Nicosia district), 800 [347];

-         a further report of 17 0ctober 1974 according to which UNHCR representatives, accompanied by Red Crescent officials, visited groups of Greek Cypriotsin the north, following which UNFICYP delivered blankets and food supplies to needy Greek Cypriots in Voni, Gypsou, Vitsada and Dhavlos [348]. The same report stated that the conditions of some 2,000 Greek Cypriots, mostly old people, living in central locations in areas under Turkish control gave cause for concern. These remarks did not include the 400 Greek Cypriots in the Morphou area and 2,500 Greek Cypriots still living in the villages in the Kyrenia area who were also reported to live in difficult conditions [349];

-         a report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees of 30 October 1974, referring to Greek Cypriots in the northern area who had either been regrouped in churches, schools, hotels or other public buildings, or were isolated in their own villages, consisting almost exclusively of aged persons, invalids, women and children [350];

-         a section of the progress report on the UN Operation in Cyprus during the period May-December 1974 summarising the arrangements for the transfer of persons kept in detention centres to the south of Cyprus. It read: "Some 2,500 Greek Cypriots have been living in poor conditions in the areas in the north where they have been concentrated, .... At the meeting_ between Mr Clerides and Mr Denktash in 11 November it was agreed that about 1,500 Greek Cypriots located at Voni (....) and Gypsou (....) would be evacuated to the south ...." [351];

-         a section of the progress report on the UN Operation in Cyprus during the period December 1974 - June 1975 stating that 250 Greek Cypriots were concentrated in Morphou from surrounding villages, of whom all but 21 were evacuated to the south [352].

250.        Statements made in an intercommunal meeting on 7 February 1975 by representatives of ICRC and UNHCR, which were later made public by the applicant Government and submitted to the Commission [353], describe the situation in Morphou as being similar to that which existed in Voni, Gypsou and Vitsada. The ICRC representative, Mr Zuger, mentioned the following elements of the confinement which may be relevant under Art. 5 of the Convention:

-         the persons concerned were mostly elderly men and women and young children;

-         they were brought from villages to Morphou;

-         they were placed in a school building, under crowded conditions and under guard;

-         they were not permitted to go outside the school building.

The UNHCR representative, Mr Kelly, mentioned:

-         that the persons concerned were moved from their villages to Morphou by the Turkish army against their will and without an explanation given to them;

-         that they were confined to a school building under deplorable physical conditions;

-         that they were not allowed to move out of the building;

-         that they were not allowed to move their furniture or their personal belongings except a few clothes.

251.        Witness Soulioti submitted to the Commission's Delegates the report of a French journalist [354], who stated: He visited Gypsou on 4 October 1974, with the permission of Turkish military authorities and in the company of Turkish army officers. He had to pass through a gate in a barbed wire barricade before arriving at the inhabited area of the village. He visited some private houses which were still inhabited, and there were almost exclusively women [355]. The men were kept in the village school. He managed to obtain permission to visit the school as well. There he saw 245 persons between 50 and 85 years of age. One of them said that some of them were very ill. They had been brought to the school after having been collected from the surrounding villages; they could not go out and did not possess anything but the clothes they had on them when the Turks took them with them [356]. There were also children in the school. The Turks said they were awaiting the re-opening of the school, but the school had been destroyed. The official reason for keeping these children in the "school-prison", as it was called by the journalist: they had tried to steal food [357].

It further appears from the journalist's report that the detainees in the school were not allowed to see their wives. Only occasionally a wife was allowed to bring them soup or coffee. The journalist was told that there would have been enough place in the village to house all the detainees.

252.        Witness Soulioti also submitted tables prepared by the Cyprus Red Cross Society from their files containing details of persons transferred to the detention centres Gypsou, Morphou, Vitsada and Voni [358]. The data in these tables are incomplete, but they include at least some information as to the places from which, and the dates at which persons were transferred to the camps.

The relevant data, arranged in a slightly different manner, are set out below.

Transfer of persons to detention centres

Detention Centre

Total number of detainees

Number of persons transferred

from

date

Gypsou

1,231

74

Milia

2. 9.74

 

 

26

Lefkonico

2. 9.74

 

 

127

Akanthou

5. 9.74

 

 

35

-

8. 9.74

 

 

130

Mandres

8. 9.74

 

 

17

Flamoudi

8. 9.74

 

 

Tripimeni

 

 

Koutsovenis

 

 

36

Pygi

8. 9.74

 

 

Syngrasi

 

 

Lapathos

 

 

132

Gypsou

8. 9.74

 

 

654

-

25. 9.74

Morphou

579

110

-

5. 9.74

 

 

175

 

 

 51

-

26. 9.74

 

 

56

-

2.10.74

 

 

19

-

11.10.74

 

 

- +168 to houses in Morphou

-

9.10 -1.11.74

Vitsada

569

114

Marathovouno

5.10.74

Voni

635

51

-

8. 9.74

 

 

9

-

21. 9.74

 

 

19

-

28. 9.74

 

 

8

Kythrea

14.10.74

 

 

548

-

8.10.74

253.        In her oral testimony concerning the detention centres [359] witness Soulioti referred to them as "concentration areas". She said that she was first informed of the conditions in these centres by the French journalist mentioned above who came to see her after his visit to Gypsou and appealed to the Red Cross to do everything possible for the persons concerned. His statements were later confirmed by persons who had been transferred from Gypsou and Voni.

254.        Witness Souioti had the impression that the detention centres were really "concentration camps". They were set up during the second phase of the Turkish military action and were: Voni, Gypsou, Vitsadha and. Marathovouno to the east of Kyrenia and Morphou in the west. The people remaining in, and even those emanating from the villages, especially round the Kythrea area, were taken from their homes and concentrated, the men in the church in one instance, and the women in the school or various houses. The people put in churches, schools or houses were guarded by soldiers; they were not allowed to leave these premises. This was especially the case in Morphou. In other camps they were not allowed to communicate with each other either, to go from one room to the other, or from one house to the other. The persons concerned included old people and children, even babies. At first neither the Red Cross nor the UN had access to these places, but finally the International Red Cross was allowed to visit them, in

late September 1974. According to the witness the commanders of all the detention centres were Turks from the mainland, although some of the guards were Turkish Cypriots. The total number of people in these camps was about 2,440. They were evacuated between 15 November and 29 November 1974 after an intercommunal agreement, brought over by the ICRC and all delivered to the Cyprus Red Cross Society of which the witness is the President.

255.        Witness Odysseos, barrister-at-law and former Chairman of the Morphou School Committee, stated [360] that one of the schools in Morphou, the so-called second elementary school, was converted into a "concentration camp". From statements he had collected out of a private interest he knew that sometime in September 1974 all the people who had remained in Morphou (about 600) were moved to the school building. First, they were harassed in their own homes, and they were told: "You better move to the school, it is safer there". An old epileptic women he knew was transported to the school in a lorry. All these people were accommodated in the school building and a private house just next to it. These buildings were only about 50 yards from the police station. The persons detained there were not allowed to take any belongings with them. They were accompanied, and during night time they were not allowed out at all. No exercise was allowed, and the detainees could only move in the room where they were staying. At the beginning the Red Cross was not allowed to visit these people. Later they could come every fortnight and occasionally every week. There was barbed wire behind the school building. Nobody, not even the Morphou people, was allowed to go home to fetch personal belongings. Some elderly people were eventually removed from the school building and put into private residences [361]. According to the witness the detention centre of Morphou existed from September 1974 until July 1975 when the last detainees were released. Some people were also brought to the centre from surrounding villages (Kapouti, Syrianokhori, Zodia, Prastio, Argaki, Katokopia, Pendayia) early in 1975.

256.        Witness Iacovou, Director of the Special Service for the Care and Rehabilitation of Displaced Persons, explained to the Commission's Delegation that the Special Service was inter alia responsible for providing the food deliveries for the Greek Cypriots enclaved in the north of Cyprus [362]. He stated further that the conditions mentioned in the Zuger and Kelly statements mentioned above [363] were not to be found throughout the area controlled by the Turkish army. They were typical of Morphou, Gypsou, Voni and Vitsada, which were "very little less than concentration camps". According to his knowledge only a few hundred people were involved in all this [364].

257.        The Commission's Delegation also heard some persons in refugee camps who stated that they themselves and/or members of their families were detained in one or other of the above-mentioned centres.

Thus refugee D, a farmer from Palekythro, stated that he was taken to Voni on 21 August 1974, eight days after the Turkish troops had advanced to his area. According to him 500 people were kept there, the men in the church, the women and children in the school, and some old people in private houses. They were all guarded by the Turks. In the church, where he was kept, there were about 120 persons. They were not allowed to leave the church to pass water, but people went to a flour store close by and to houses in the village in order to provide themselves with food. He stayed in Voni for about three months. The camp was evacuated in batches. About 200 people left in groups of 10 to 50 [365].

Refugee J, a boy of eleven years of age, stated that he was kept in the school of Voni, together with the women. According to him the Turkish soldiers gave orders that if they left the school they would be shot [366].

Refugee B from Trakhoni stated that her father was detained in Voni. According to her account the people there were guarded by Turkish soldiers only, not by Turkish Cypriots, and they were punished if they did not obey their orders, e.g. not to speak to each other [367].

Refugee E stated that he was taken from his house in Kythrea to a house in Marathovouno where he was kept for three days, then to Vitsada, where he stayed for a month, and finally to Gypsou where he spent another three months [368].

258.        Many of the written statements submitted by the applicant Government indicate that the authors were detained in one or several of the above-mentioned centres.

Most of these statements refer to the conditions in Voni [369]. On the whole they confirm the testimony of the persons in the refugee camps, with the exception of one saying that the guards were only Turkish Cypriots [370]. According to another written statement a registration of detainees in Voni was made on 21 August 1974 by a Turkish officer with the assistance of a named Greek Cypriot, showing that there were 654 in all. [371]. Another statement said that detainees in Voni were not allowed to communicate with the persons in other premises [372].

A number of statements also referred to detention in Marathovouno, Vitsada and Gypsou [373]. All the persons who stated that they had been detained in Marathovouno said that they were later transferred to Vitsada, and some eventually to Gypsou.

(b)         Use of private houses for confinement

259.        It appears from the testimony of witnesses and persons heard in refugee camps as well as from statements submitted by the applicant Government that a number of Greek Cypriots in northern Cyprus were confined to private houses and not allowed to leave them at all. Their situation was thus different from that of the "enclaved" Greek Cypriots mentioned above [374], and they were normally referred to by the witnesses as "detained persons".

260.        The lists of numbers of persons transferred to detention centres submitted by witness Soulioti expressly state with regard to Morphou that out of a total of 579 detainees 55 were kept in a house in Miaoulis Street, 63 in a house in Apollon Street, and 50 in other houses [375]. The report by a French journalist on conditions in Gypsou, submitted by the same witness [376], also distinguished between persons detained in houses (mostly old women) and those who were detained in the school. Witness Soulioti repeatedly mentioned private houses in connection with detention centres also in her oral statement to the Commission's Delegation [377].

261.        Witness Stylianou similarly referred to the detention of small groups of persons in private houses which are not connected with detention centres, and gave figures for some villages in the Kyrenia district as of August 1975 [378]. He stated that these small groups of e.g. only 5 people in on case (Ayia Irene) were regularly kept in one house, and in some cases, e.g. in Lapithos, in two or three houses, though there were 131 persons in all. They had been expelled from their own houses and transferred to other houses, and they were guarded by Turkish soldiers patrolling them [379].

262.        Witness Odysseos mentioned private houses in connection with the detention centre in Morphou. From his statements it appears that in a small private house near to the school building which served as detention centre some 60 persons Were kept under similar conditions as in the school [380]. Later some elderly people were removed from the school and taken to three private residences in Morphou, namely some 50 to a pharmacist's house in Solomos Street, 30-35 to a house in Miaouli Street, and 48 to a house in Apollon Street. In February or March 1975 people from the villages Pendayia, Nikitas and Prastio were brought to these houses, and the last of them were only released in July 1975 [381]. The same witness also referred to statements of persons who said they had been concentrated in two or three houses in Pendayia. They were brought there from surrounding villages, Xeros, Karavostassi, Potamos tou Kambou and Petra [382].

263.        Witness Tryfon submitted some statements of persona he said, had been made to the Cyprus Land and Property Owners' Association of which he is the chairmen. These persons stated that the Turkish forces had expelled them from their own houses and kept them in other houses, i.a. in Lapithos and Karavas [383].

264.        Of the persons interviewed in refugee camps Refugee C stated that she had been detained with other co-villagers for 13 days in an English house at Karmi in which she had earlier taken refuge and to which she had been returned a after a forcible excursion to Boghezi. She stated that the people in that house were not allowed to leave it, nor was access to them allowed to the Rod Cross; they were under the absolute control of the Turks. There was a Turkish Cypriot guarding them, the Turks from Turkey would not allow him to do something for the alleviation of their situation [384]. Refugee D who had been confined to the church of Voni said some old people were put in houses in Voni village [385].

265.        Some written statements of persons submitted by the applicant Government also refer to longer periods of confinement in private houses [386].

(c)         Confinement  to the Dome Hotel in  Kyrenia and the village of Bellapais

266.        In the first days of the Turkish military action which started on 20 July 1974 with a landing operation in the Kyrenia area, one of the main tourist regions of Cyprus, the Dome Hotel at Kyrenia was used as a refuge and assembly place of foreign tourists. While they were soon evacuated, the Hotel continued to be used as a shelter by many persons whom the UN documents described as being under United Nations "protective custody".

267.        According to a UN report of 24 July 1974 they included a number of Greek Cypriot and Greek civilians plus a number of wounded National Guard soldiers [387]. The number of Greek Cypriots in the Hotel was reported to be 500 on 26 July 1974 [388]. The way in which they had come to the Hotel was described in a summary of developments published on 5 August. It stated that Greek Cypriots who had remained in Greek Cypriot towns and villages were brought by Turkish troops to several assembly points, including the Dome Hotel at Kyrenia and in the village Bellapais [389].

268.        According to a UN report of 28 July 1974 UNFICYP tried to use its good services for bringing about arrangements that would have enabled Greek Cypriots "detained" at Kyrenia and Bellapais, as well as Turkish Cypriots detained at Limassol and Larnaca, to return to their homes. However, those attempts apparently failed in so far as the Dome Hotel was concerned [390]. At Bellapais the Turkish authorities returned 100 Greek Cypriot prisoners to the village and released them to their homes on 5 August 1974. The UN reported that these persons, together with several hundred Greek Cypriot civilians who had remained in the village, were able to move freely after UNFICYP patrolling had been resumed in the village by agreement with the Turkish military authorities [391].

269.        UNFICYP was gradually subjected to certain restrictions affecting its freedom of movement in the, north of Cyprus. Thus it was reported on 30 July 1974 that the Turkish forces informed UNFICYP that any outside assistance intended for Bellapais and the Dome Hotel should be channelled for distribution through the Turkish army [392]. On the first day of the second phase of the Turkish military action, 14 August 1974, the Turkish commander ordered the withdrawal of UNFICYP personnel from the Dome Hotel and Bellapais which had both been used as UN observation posts, and UNFICYP withdrew under protest. Only an ICRC observer remained in the Hotel [393]. Although the UN "protective custody" had thus apparently come to an end the persons in the Hotel remained there. The progress report on the UN Operation in Cyprus covering the period December 1974 to June 1975 stated that of the 350 who were originally confined to the Dome Hotel, only 53 remained. Seven were permitted by the Turkish Cypriot authorities to return to their Kyrenia homes [394].

270.        Of the witnesses heard by the Commission's Delegation, the main witness on conditions in the Dome Hotel was Dr. Charalambides, a physician and former Deputy Mayor of Kyrenia, who had himself been confined there until 5 April 1975. He stated [395] that after the Turkish invasion in July 1974 he first stayed in his house in Kyrenia, but when it became too dangerous to remain there he moved with his wife to the Dome Hotel on 23 July. When he arrived in the Hotel there were still some 800 foreigners there who were soon evacuated. Then many people started to take refuge in the Hotel, and some were brought by the UN and others by the Turkish army. After the evacuation of the foreigners there was a total of about 800 persons at the Hotel. They remained under the core of the United Nations for a month. After the second phase of the Turkish military action the UN was obliged to leave, and Turkish Cypriot policemen took over. The Turkish forces remained outside and wore not allowed to come into the hotel.

271.        As a physician the witness was allowed to leave the hotel escorted by a Turkish Cypriot policeman in order to see his patients. Initially other persons could also leave the hotel with escorts, e.g. in order to go to the bank, or the market, but more and more restrictions were introduced after Christmas 1974. The Turkish Cypriot police inspector who guarded the hotel entrance got orders from the Turkish commander, to whom he reported whenever a problem arose.

The commander himself visited the hotel three times. The persons confined in the hotel were initially not allowed to walk on the verandahs, so they asked for his permission to go to the hotel's swimming pool. This was granted, and in September they were also allowed to do a walk outside the hotel to Kyrenia harbour twice a week, and to go to a nearby church on Sundays between 9.00 and 11.00 a.m. However, in December 1974 these outings were cancelled without any explanation. The witness asked for a laissez-passer to the police station, in order to be able to carry out his duties as a doctor more easily, but without success. He could, however, occasionally return to his house with an escort in order to pick up surgical instruments or medicaments. Several times the persons confined to the Dome Hotel were promised that they would be allowed to return to their homes; Mr. Denktash who came to the hotel with Mr. Clerides also promised this. The conditions in the hotel were better than in other areas of northern Cyprus. In the beginning there was little room since the hotel's capacity was 600, and there were 800 persons. There were electricity cuts and, later, food rationing. When the witness left in April 1975, there were only 75 persons left in the hotel.

272.        Other witnesses, who referred to the conditions in the Dome Hotel as "detention", were:

-         Witness Soulioti, who stated that before "real concentration areas" were established during the second phase of the Turkish military operation "a few people were sort of mopped up from the villages west of Kyrenia in the first phase and put in the Dome Hotel" [396]. The Red Crescent Representative, Dr. Pamir, promised the "detainees" in the Dome Hotel in September 1974 that they would soon be allowed to return to their homes [397]. This promise was not kept although they were permitted to take a walk from time to time and to go to church; these privileges were later withdrawn [398];

-         Witness Stylianou, who stated that on 4 August 1975 there were still 47 persons detained in the Dome Hotel [399].

-         Witness Iacovou, who stated [400] that the people in Kyrenia took refuge in the Dome Hotel because of the atrocities committed in the first days of the Turkish military action. They later wanted to go back to their homes in Kyrenia, but in spite of promises given by the Turkish leadership, they were not allowed to do so. Only about five families were permitted to return to their homes; the remainder were transferred to the area controlled by the applicant Government [401].

273.        Only a few of the written statements submitted by the applicant Government refer to the conditions in the Dome Hotel.

-         The author of one of these statements [402], a women identified as owner of a supermarket in Kyrenia, said that on 23 July 1974 the Austrian UNCIVPOL civilian police element of UNFICYP) advised all Greek Cypriots to move to the Dome Hotel which was guarded by Austrian and Canadian members of the peace-keeping force. Each time Turkish soldiers from Turkey or Turkish Cypriots visited the hotel premises they were escorted by members of UNFICYP. On the other hand, UNFICYP and ICRC delegations and foreign journalists who came to the hotel had to be escorted by Turkish military or police personnel who were present at every contact the persons confined to the hotel had with foreigners. The Turks also prevented the free movement of UNFICYP personnel within the hotel premises. One day they transferred all men between 18 and 58 to Saray prison in Nicosia for interrogation, without any UN escort; only some elderly persons and British citizens were returned to the Dome Hotel after six days. In mid August the Turkish army and police officers gave a three-hour warning to UNFICYP to leave the hotel and hand it over to them, otherwise they would be shot at. UNFICYP left after having informed the persons in the hotel that they had received assurances that nothing would happen to them. Later Turkish soldiers permitted members of the Red Cross to Stay with the people in the hotel. Turkish soldiers were free to enter the hotel and occasionally brought with them journalists from Turkey to hold interviews. The persons confined to the hotel formed a committee which dealt with all their problems. Before the author of the statement was released together with her family on 15 September 1974, they were told by Turkish soldiers that they would be exchanged with Turkish prisoners.

-         The author of another statement [403], identified as a 23 year-old woman, stated that she had gone to the Dome Hotel together with her family on 23 July 1974, following the occupation of Kyrenia by the Turkish army on the preceding day.         The entrance and surroundings of the hotel were guarded by Turkish policeman and Turkish military policemen. On the following days Turkish soldiers brought to the hotel Greek inhabitants of Kyrenia and surrounding villages (Ayios Georgios, Trimithi, Karmi, Fterikha, Karavas), altogether about 400 persons. Early in October persons confined to the hotel were given permission to go to their homes in order to inspect them, under escort. On 6 October after being granted permission, they were accompanied by Turks to the church of K. Kyrenia in order to clean it.

IV.         Evaluation of evidence obtained

274.        The Commission considers that the evidence obtained establishes that Greek Cypriots in the north of Cyprus were confined for considerable periods of time at certain locations, including detention centres, private houses, and the Dome Hotel in Kyrenia.

275.        As regards detention centres, it has been established that such centres existed in schools and churches at Voni, Gypsou and Morphou. There is also evidence concerning the existence of similar centres at Marathovouno and Vitsada but the Commission is unable, on the basis of the material before it, fully to determine the conditions which existed there. It appears from written and oral statements that the detention centres in these two villages were evacuated to Gypsou before the intercommunal arrangements for the transfer to the south of Cyprus of persons subjected to such measures of confinement were concluded in November 1974. This would explain why the relevant intercommunal agreement mentions only Gypsou and Voni. The evidence also shows that the centre at Morphou was not fully established until a later stage.

276.        The Commission finds it proved that more than 2,000 Greek Cypriots, mainly civilians, including old people and children, were transferred to the centres, and that their freedom of movement was consequently restricted to the respective premises where they were kept under guard in miserable conditions. Apart from the written and oral evidence of persons who stated that they had themselves been kept in one or several of the centres, this was also confirmed by independent sources such as the statements of UNHCR and ICRC officials at an intercommunal meeting, the record cf which the Commission accepts as correct, and in the report of a journalist describing the conditions in Gypsou. Although the relevant UN documents do not contain details about conditions in the centres, they do not in any way contradict the above findings but rather tend to confirm them. The period of confinement in these centres was in most cases two to three months.

277.        As regards confinement in private houses the Commission considers that a distinction should be made between houses used in connection with detention centres, and other houses.

(a)         There is evidence showing that at least at Gypsou and Morphou some private residences were used as annexes of the detention centres established there. The Greek Cypriots confined to these houses lived in the same, if not worse, conditions as those in the school and church, and were guarded together with them.

(b)         There is also evidence that elsewhere, too, e.g. in Lapithos Greek Cypriots were confined to private houses either their own ones or houses to which they were transferred. There are strong indications that conditions in these houses were sometimes similar to those in the detention centres, but the Commission has been unable, on the basis of the evidence before it, to establish a clear picture of all the relevant circumstances, e.g. as to the duration of the confinement, the number of persons concerned, whether they were continuously guarded, etc.

278.        Finally, as regards the confinement of Greek Cypriots in the Dome Hotel the Commission finds that it developed from an original situation of UN protective custody, such as it also existed in the village of Bellapais. Although it has been established to the Commission's satisfaction that some Greek Cypriots from Kyrenia and the surrounding villages were brought to the Hotel by Turkish troops while it was still under UN control, it is not clear whether this happened against their will. In addition to them there were no doubt many, including the Commission's main witness in this matter, Dr Charalambides, who went to the Hotel of their own volition, some on the advice of UNFICYP, in order to take refuge there. However, the Commission finds it established that the persons in the Hotel were soon subjected to restrictions of their freedom of movement. They could only leave the Hotel under escort after having obtained permission, which was given on a restrictive basis for reasons such as shopping, visits to church, walks for exercise twice a week, and apparently once early in October 1974 in order to inspect their houses. With this exception the persons confined to the Hotel were not allowed to go to their houses. The arrangements made for Dr Charalambides, who was permitted to fetch medicaments and surgical instruments from his house, and to visit patients in Kyrenia–town, were apparently of a special character and cannot be considered as representative. The Commission further finds it established that, after the withdrawal of UNFICYP, the Dome Hotel was guarded by Turkish Cypriots under the orders of a Turkish Commander, who occasionally came to the Hotel for inspection. The practice concerning permission to leave the Hotel became gradually more restrictive, especially after Christmas 1974. The majority of persons confined to the Hotel were apparently transferred to the south of Cyprus during the first half of 1975.

V.         Responsibility of Turkey under the Convention

279.        It has been established that many of the persons confined to detention centres or the Dome Hotel were brought there by the Turkish army [404].

280.        It has also been established that the detention centres were under the command of Turkish army officers, to whom the guarding personnel, including Turkish soldiers and Turkish Cypriot policemen, reported if important issues had to be decided. [[405]]

281.        A similar situation existed at the Dome Hotel after 14 August 1974 when UNFICYP was forced to withdraw and the full control passed to the Turkish military authorities [406]. However, the Commission has been unable, on the basis of the evidence before it, fully to establish the extent of Turkish control with regard to the Hotel before that date [407].

282.        It follows that the persons confined in the detention centres, and those confined in the Dome Hotel after 14 August 1974, were under the actual control of the Turkish army. Turkey thus exercised jurisdiction, within the meaning of Art. 1 of the Convention as interpreted in the Commission's decision on admissibility, in respect of those persons and their confinement must therefore be imputed to Turkey under the Convention.

283.        As regards confinement to private houses, the Commission finds that the circumstances in private residences attached to detention centres were the same as in these centres and the confinement of Greek Cypriots to these houses must therefore equally be imputed to Turkey because these persons were under the command of Turkish army officers and guarded with the assistance of Turkish soldiers [408].

284.        On the other hand, the Commission has not been able fully to establish the circumstances of confinement to other, isolated private houses. However, there are strong indications that these premises, too, were often under the control of the Turkish army [409].

VI.         Conclusions

285.        The Commission, by 13 votes against one, considers that the confinement of more than two thousand Greek Cypriots to detention centres established in schools and churches at Voni, Gypsou and Morphou, which is imputable to Turkey, amounted to a deprivation of liberty within the meaning of Art. 5 (1) of the Convention. The confinement to these centres was not ordered in accordance with any procedure prescribed by law, and did not serve any of the purposes justifying detention which are mentioned in sub—paragraphs (a) to (f) of Art. 5 para. (1). It follows that the confinement of Greek Cypriots in the above detention centres was not in confirmity with Art. 5 (1) of the Convention.

286.        The Commission further considers, by 13 votes against one, that the confinement of Greek Cypriots to private houses in Gypsou and Morphou, where they were kept under similar circumstances as in the detention centres, was equally a deprivation of liberty contrary to Art. 5 (1) of the Convention, imputable to Turkey.

287.        Finally, as regards the Dome Hotel, the Commission is not called upon to examine the compatibility of the initial "protective custody" of the United Nation's with the provisions of Art. 5 of the Convention. Since it has not been fully determined to what extent the Turkish authorities controlled the Hotel prior to the withdrawal of UNFICYP the Commission proposes to limit its findings to the period after 14 August 1974 when the full responsibility for the Hotel passed to the Turkish authorities.

288.        The confinement, after this date, of Greek Cypriots to the premises of the Hotel, with no possibility of leaving without permission and without being escorted, was in the Commission's opinion a deprivation of liberty within the meaning of Art. 5 (1) of the Convention. This deprivation of liberty was not ordered in accordance with any procedure prescribed by law, nor did it serve any of the purposes enumerated in sub-paragraphs (a) to (f) of Art. 5 (1) as justifying detention.

The Commission concludes, by ten votes against two with two abstentions, that the confinement of Greek Cypriots to the Kyrenia Dome Hotel after 14 August 1974, imputable to Turkey, was not in conformity with Art. 5 (1) of the Convention.

289.        The question whether any of the above deprivations of liberty may have been justified under Art. 15 (1) of the Convention is reserved for consideration in Part III of this Report.

C. "Prisoners and detainees"

I.         Submissions of the Parties

(1)         Applicant Government

290.        The applicant Government submitted that the Turkish armed forces arrested and detained hundreds of Greek Cypriots arbitrarily and with no lawful authority both in Cyprus and in Turkey [410].

291.        The Government stated that on entering any inhabited area the Turkish forces at once arrested the Greek Cypriot population. Men were usually separated and detained apart from old people, women and children [411].

Some male Greek Cypriots were kept as prisoners in places like Saray Prison and Pavlides Garage in the Turkish part of Nicosia. Most of them were subsequently deported to Turkey where they were detained in prisons in Adana, Amasia and Atiama. Those deported were mostly civilians of all ages between 16 and 70 [412].

Turkey did not give complete lists of these detainees. A total of 2,460, of whom more than 2,000 had been deported to Turkey, were gradually released as a result of relevant arrangements [413]. The last group of prisoners from Turkey was released by the end of October 1974 [414].

292.        The applicant Government further stated that there was evidence that a number of missing persons were among those who had been expatriated, and they invited the Commission to investigate whether they were still detained in Turkey [415].

(2)         Respondent Government

293.        The respondent Government who, for the reasons stated above [416], did not take part in the proceedings on the merits, have not made any submissions with regard to the above allegations. The Permanent Representative of Turkey at the meeting on 6 October 1975 [417] contested the testimony of Mr Pirkettis concerning the witness' detention in Turkey.

II.         Relevant Article of the Convention

294.        The Commission considers that the above allegations concerning the arrest and detention of male Greek Cypriots as "prisoners and detainees" raise issues under Art. 5 of the Convention [418]. The question whether the conditions of this detention were contrary to Art. 3 of the Convention will be dealt with separately [419].

III.         Evidence obtained

295.        It has already been mentioned that the so-called "enclaved Greek Cypriots" and persons confined to "detention centres" in the north of Cyprus were not referred to as "prisoners and detainees" in the relevant intercommunal agreements and UN documents [420]. The Commission has now to examine the situation of those persons who have been officially recognised as "prisoners and detainees" by both Parties to the present applications. In this respect the Commission observes that such "prisoners and detainees" apparently existed on both sides in comparable numbers. In the present case, however, the Commission is only concerned with Greek Cypriot "prisoners and detainees" whose detention is imputable to Turkey. It notes that 2,487 Greek Cypriot "prisoners and detainees" were released by October 1974 on the basis of several intercommunal agreements [421].

296.        The intercommunal agreements and UN documents referring to them are exclusively concerned with the release and transfer of "prisoners and detainees" to their respective sides. They have been described above in connection with the displacement of the persons concerned [422].

On the whole the said documents do not give details as to the circumstances in which these persons were taken prisoners. They do, however, indicate that they included i.a. civilians [423], persons under 18 and over 55 years of age, as well as religious, medical and paramedical personnel [424], and that a number of these "prisoners and detainees" were deported to Turkey [425].

297.        Other UN documents referring to prisoners and detainees are:

-         a report of 31 July 1974 according to which an agreement was reached on 30 July between UNFICYP and ICRC on their respective fields of activity; ICRC assumed i.a. responsibility for providing relief and taking care of "prisoners"[426];

-         a report of 5 August 1974 stating that most of the male population of the Greek Cypriot villages in the areas then controlled by Turkish forces were taken prisoner and escorted by Turkish troops into the area of BoghaziGeunyeli -Orta Keuy [427];

-         a report of 6 August 1974 according to which ICRC visited 127 Greek Cypriot men who has been brought from Kyrenia to Saray police station [428];

-         a report of 15 August 1974 according to which Turkish tanks had reached the old city of Famagusta where some National Guard soldiers were taken prisoner; the Turkish Commander then asked National Guard troops in the Famagusta area to surrender, and the National Guard asked for terms of surrender [429];

-         a report of 10 September 1974 according to which 500 Greek Cypriots were captured on 26 August by Turkish forces in the Karpasia area; the inhabitants of this area were hampered in harvesting the tobacco crop since most of the young men were detained [430].

298.        One of the witnesses heard by the Commission's Delegation, Mr Perkettis, stated that he was taken prisoner and deported to Turkey [431]. He had been on holiday in the north with his family, and sought refuge in a house at Trimithi when the Turkish army arrived there. The people in Trimithi were then gathered in the school and church, and twice taken for forcible excursions to Boghazi on 26 and 29 July 1974. The second time all the men between 15 and 70 including the witness were separated there from their families and put in a sheep-fold. Opposite there was a pen in which Greek Cypriot soldiers were kept who had been taken prisoner before. Some said they had been there for nine days already. The next day the prisoners were fettered and blindfolded and transported to a ship which took them to Mersin in Turkey. There were also Greek Cypriot soldiers among the prisoners on the ship who were separated from other prisoners by barbed wire. From Mersin the witness was transported with other prisoners to Adana, and on 26 August transferred to Amasia. He was released to the south of Cyprus on 26 October 1974.

The witness mentioned details of some other prisoners who were detained together with him. One was a prison warder, another one a surgeon for the police force in Cyprus [432]. He also mentioned the father-in-law of a policeman who was arrested together with him in Trimithi [433]. He thought only about 400 out of the 2,000 persons expatriated were soldiers [434]. Soldiers and civilians were not separated during their detention in prisons in Turkey [435].

299.        Other witnesses who spoke about prisoners and detainees were:

-         Mrs Soulioti. She referred to lists of "prisoners-of-war" Given to the Red Cross, and stated that the two places where such prisoners were held in Cyprus were Saray prison and Pavlides Garage in Nicosia [436]. She said she was present herself when the prisoners-of-war were released, most of them had been taken to Adana and were released from there. Of the 2,526 prisoners-of-war all, with the exception of 146, had been taken to Turkey. They were not all members of the armed forces, there were priests and civilians among them who were taken prisoner in their respective villages, where they were separated from their families [437].

-         Dr Hadjikakou. He stated that on entering Greek Cypriot villages the Turkish troops used to separate the men and take them either to "Pavlides Garage concentration camp" or Saray prison in Nicosia, where they were kept for periods of time running from several days to some months. Many were shipped to Turkey. He had heard the same story from about thirty to forty people, constituents and patients of his [438]. The witness also submitted a paper prepared by him containing details of individual cases [439].

-         Witness Azinas. He stated that some directors of co-operatives were taken to Adana, among them the manager of the Tobacco-Growers' Co-operative who was replaced by a Turkish Cypriot [440].

300.        Persons interviewed by Delegates of the Commission in refugee camps also mentioned persons taken prisoner:

-         Refugee A from Ayios Georgios stated that she saw two soldiers being taken prisoner by Turkish soldiers in the street of her village [441]. The Turkish soldiers searched her house and arrested her son and two other soldiers. Nothing was heard of them after [442]. Her other son was a soldier serving at Koutsovendis during the second phase of the Turkish military operation. He was last seen at Pavlides Garage [443].

-         Refugee C from Karmi stated that in her village the Turks separated all men and transported them to Turkey; her son was detained in Turkey [444].

-         Refugee E from Kythrea stated that he gave civilian clothes to six Greek soldiers who came to his house. Later he identified them at an identification parade held by a Turkish army officer ("three stars captain"), and they were arrested [445].

-         Refugee H, a boy aged 14, said that the people in his village were gathered in the school on 15 August 1974 when Turkish soldiers came and took them outside the village where they were searched. All young people from 18 to 40 were arrested and taken to Saray police station in Nicosia [446].

301.        Many written statements submitted by the applicant Government were by persons who said they were taken prisoner, or saw the arrest of other persons [447]. Several stated that they were soldiers of the National Guard and were taken to the mainland of Turkey [448], some that they were civilians and taken to Turkey, among them a priest and the head of a village commission [449]. One stated that he was a village prefect and that he was arrested by Turkish Cypriots and subsequently detained in Saray prison and Pavlides Garage [450].

Seven further statements allegedly made on their release by Greek Cypriot men who had been deported to and detained in Turkey were submitted by the applicant Government on 13 May 1975 [451]. The Government also submitted a file containing "a selection of facts and other evidence relating to undeclared Greek-Cypriot prisoners-of-war and missing persons", prepared by the "Pancyprian Committee of Parents and Relatives of Undeclared Prisoners and Missing Persons" in August 1975 [452].

302.        Finally, the Commission's Delegation saw news films of the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation showing the arrival of released prisoners-of-war [453] and an interview with a former prisoner-of-war [454].

IV.         Evaluation of the evidence obtained

303.        The Commission finds it established that more than 2,400 Greek Cypriots were arrested during the first and second phase of the Turkish military action and kept as prisoners until their release on the basis of intercommunal agreements concluded in September 1974 and implemented by the end of October 1974. The Commission finds that more than 2,000 of these prisoners were deported to Turkey where they were kept in prisons at Adana and Amasia. The remainder, some 146 persons as stated by witness Soulioti, were kept in two locations in the Turkish sector of Nicosia, Saray prison and Pavlides Garage.

304.        The Commission finds that the above prisoners included a substantial number of National Guard soldiers, but that these were not all arrested in the course of actual fighting. There are, however, indications that all these soldiers were subsequently deported to Turkey.

305.        The Commission also finds that many of the prisoners were civilians, who were either detained in the north of Cyprus or deported to Turkey, including the Commission's main witness on this matter, Mr Pirkettis.

306.        The Commission has not been able to find out whether undeclared Greek Cypriot prisoners are still in Turkish custody, as alleged by the applicant Government. The problem of missing persons will be dealt with separately [455].

V.         Responsibility of Turkey under the Convention

307.        The Greek Cypriots deported to and detained in prison in Turkey were clearly under the actual control of the Turkish authorities, and thus under the jurisdiction of Turkey, within the meaning of Art. 1 of the Convention. Their detention must therefore be imputed to Turkey under the Convention.

308.        The Commission has not found sufficient evidence showing that the two locations where prisoners were kept in the north of Cyprus, namely Saray prison and Pavlides Garage, were under the control of the Turkish army, or guarded by Turkish soldiers. The Commission is consequently unable, on the basis of the evidence before it, to establish whether the detention of Greek Cypriots in those locations is imputable to Turkey.

VI.         Conclusions

309.        The Commission considers that the detention of Greek Cypriot military personnel in Turkey, which is clearly imputable to Turkey under the Convention, constituted a deprivation of liberty within the meaning of Art. 5 (1) of the Convention. Since it did not serve any of the purposes enumerated in sub-paragraphs (a) to (f) of this provision, the Commission concludes, by thirteen votes against one, that it was not in conformity with Art. 5 para. (1) of the Convention.

310.        As regards the detention of Greek Cypriot civilians, the Commission considers that, in so far as it occurred in Turkey and therefore is imputable to Turkey, it equally constituted a deprivation of liberty within the meaning of Art. 5 (1) of the Convention not serving any of the purposes mentioned in sub-paragraphs (a) to (f) of this provision. The Commission therefore concludes, by thirteen votes against one, that the detention of civilians in Turkey was equally not in conformity with Art. 5, para. (1) of the Convention.

311.        However, in view of its finding that it was unable to establish the imputability to Turkey under the Convention of the detention of 146 Greek Cypriots at Saray prison and Pavlides Garage in the Turkish sector of Nicosia [456], the Commission considers, by ten votes against two, with two abstentions, that it is not called upon to express an opinion as to the conformity with Art. 5 of the Convention of the detention of Greek Cypriot prisoners in the north of Cyprus.

312.        The question whether any of the above deprivations of liberty, in particular the detention of military personnel as prisoners-of-war, were justified under Art. 15 of the Convention is reserved for consideration in Part III of this Report.

313.        The Commission has taken account of the fact that both Cyprus and Turkey are Parties to the (Third) Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949, relative to the treatment of prisoners-of-war, and that, in connection with the events in the summer of 1974, Turkey in particular assured the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) of its intention to apply the Geneva Conventions and its willingness to grant all necessary facilities for humanitarian action [457]. In fact, ICRC delegates made regular visits to soldiers and civilians who had been granted prisoner-of-war status by the authorities on either side [458]. They included, before the resumption of

hostilities on 14 August 1974, 385 Greek Cypriots in Adana, who were visited by two ICRC delegates, one of them a doctor, 63 Greek Cypriots in Saray prison in the Turkish part of Nicosia and 3,268 Turkish Cypriots in camps in Cyprus [459].

After fighting in August had come to an end the ICRC obtained permission to visit Greek Cypriot prisoners first in transit camps in Cyprus and then in three camps in Turkey, and several thousand Turkish Cypriot prisoners in four camps in the south of Cyprus [460].

Having regard to the above, the Commission has not found it necessary to examine the question of a breach of Art. 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights with regard to persons accorded the status of prisoners of war.

D. Final observation

314.        The Commission, by seven votes against six with three abstentions, decided not to consider as a separate issue the effect of detention on the exercise of the right to respect for one's private and family life and home (Art. 8 of the Convention).


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Notes:

[289] Cf para. 88.

[290] Cf Application I, para. 3 and Application II, para. 3 g.

[291] Particulars I, para. 20G.

[292] Cf Chapter 1, para. 178 above.

[293] Particulars II, para. 12g.

[294] Cf Part I, para. 23.

[295] Cf the Government's statement in Particulars II, quoted in para. 217 above.

[296] UN Doc. S/11568, para. 43

[297] UN Doc. S/11717, para. 36.

[298] UN Doc. S/11488/Add. 2, para. 2c.

[299] For the latter category of persons see sub-section B below.

[300] CF Chapter 1 above, in particular paras 131 et seq.

[301] Cf UN Doc. S/11717, paras 36 and 40.

[302] Cf Un Docs S/11568, paras 23 and 33; S/11624, para. 17, and S/11711, para. 7.

[303] Cf Verbatim Record, p. 37.

[304] Cf Verbatim Record, p. 32. The witness also gave figures as of August 1975 and submitted tables showing the distribution of enclaved persons on 14 January 1975 (Addendum, pp. 25-28).

[305] See sub-section B below.

[306] Verbatim Record, pp. 32-33.

[307] Cf UN Doc. S/11468/Add. 1, para. 8, of 10 September 1974 according to which the inhabitants of the Karpasia area were hampered in the harvesting of the tobacco crop "since most of the young men have been detained".

[308] Verbatim Record, p. 36.

[309] Verbatim Record, pp. 35-36.

[310] See Chapter 1 above, para. 178.

[311] Verbatim Record, p. 73.

[312] See below, sub-section B.

[313] Verbatim Record, pp. 82-83.

[314] Verbatim Record, pp. 69-70.

[315] Verbatim Record, p. 92.

[316] Verbatim Record, p. 172.

[317] Statements II, No 16, at p. 3.

[318] Statements II, No 20.

[319] See sub-section B below.

[320] Para. 227 above.

[321] In particular whether there was also a curfew during the day hours as stated by witness Stylianou (see para. 225 above). The applicant Government only complained of a curfew at night (cf para. 217 above).

[322] Cf para. 220 above.

[323] Cf paras 230-231.

[324] Cf paras 230-231.

[325] Cf Application I, para. 3, and Application II, para.3 g.

[326] Particulars I, paras 20 G and 23.

[327] Particulars I, paras 20 G and 22 B (i).

[328] For detention of persons classified as "prisoners and detainees" who were sometimes designated as "prisoners of war", cf sub-section C below.

[329] For cases of forcible displacement to the south of Cyprus by the deportation of groups of persons across the demarcation line see Chapter 1 above.

[330] For conditions of detention see Chapter 4 B below.

[331] Particulars I, para. 23.

[332] Particulars I, para. 20 G at p. 15.

[333] Application II, para. 3 g.

[334] Particulars II, para. 12 g.

[335] Ibid.

[336] See Part I, para. 23.

[337] For the text of Art. 5 see para. 220 above.

[338] See Chapter 4 B below.

[339] Cf sub-section A above.

[340] Cf paras 247-258 below.

[341] Cf paras 259-265 below.

[342] Cf paras 266-273 below.

[343] Cf Chapter 1 above, paras 144, 146, 148.

[344] Cf Chapter 1 above, paras 117-122.

[345] Cf Chapter 1 above, para. 118.

[346] E.g. the church and school of the village Palekythro, to which many of the written statements submitted by the applicant Government refer (cf Statements I, Nos 12, 29, 41, 49, 58, 71, 89, 103, 107, 109, 112, 113). A UN report of 5 August 1974 (UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 15, para. 8a) referred to assembly points "principally in Kyrenia (Dome Hotel), Bellapais, Karmi and Trimithi".

[347] UN Doc. S/11468/Add. 2, para. 11.

[348] UN Doc. S/11468/Add. 4, para. 8.

[349] UN Doc. S/11468/Add. 4,. para. 11.

[350] UN Doc. S/11488/Add. 2, Annex, para. 20.

[351] UN Doc. S/11568, para. 47; see also Chapter 1 above, paras 144-145.

[352] UN Doc. S/11717, para. 40; see also Chapter 1 above, para. 146.

[353] For full text and reference see Chapter 1 above, para. 133.

[354] Addendum, pp. 19-21.

[355] Cf para. 260 below.

[356] Addendum, p. 20.

[357] Addendum, p. 21.

[358] Addendum, pp. 22.23.

[359] Verbatim Record, pp. 92-96.

[360] Cf para. 262 below.

[361] Verbatim Record, p. 161.

[362] Para. 250; for full text see Chapter 1 above, para. 133.

[363] Verbatim Record, p. 169.

[364] Addendum, pp. 9-10.

[365] Addendum, p. 14.

[366] Addendum, pp. 5-6.

[367] Addendum, p. 11.

[368] Cf. Statement I, Nos. 1, 12, 41, 47, 49, 51, 72, 89, 98-105, 109, 111, 112, 119, 120, and Statements II Nos. 9, 13 and 19

[369] Statements I, No. 98.

[370] Statements I, No. 41.

[371] Statements I, No. 111.

[372] Statements I, Nos. 71, 75, 76, 114-116; Statements II, Nos. 7 and 18.

[373] See sub-section A of this Chapter

[374] Addendum, pp. 22-23; also para 252 above.

[375] Addendum, pp. 19-21; see also para. 251 above.

[376] Verbatim Record, pp. 8-10.

[377] Verbatim Record, p. 32.

[378] Verbatim Record, p. 33.

[379] Verbatim Record, p. 93.

[380] Verbatim Record, p. 95.

[381] Verbatim Record, p. 96.

[382] Addendum, Statements on pp. 90, 91, 93, 94.

[383] Addendum, pp. 7-8.

[384] Addendum, p. 10.

[385] E.g. Statements I, Nos 46, 51, 54; Statements II, Nos 7, 8 11, 12.

[386] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 6, para. 8.

[387] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 8, para. 6.

[388] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 15, para. 8a. With regard to Bellapais it was originally reported that some 5,000 Greek Cypriots, among them 100 wounded, were under UN protective custody ((UN Docs S/11353/Add. 6, para. 8; Add. 7, para. 6 and Add. 8, para. 6). Their number had fallen to 2,000 on 30 July 1974 (UN Doc. S/11353/ Add. 11, para. 3).

[389] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 10, para. 6.

[390] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 16, para. 8.

[391] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 11, para. 5.

[392] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 25, paras. 10, 12, 18.

[393] UN Doc. S/11717, para. 40.

[394] Verbatim Record, pp. 72-86.

[395] Verbatim Record, p. 7 .

[396] Verbatim Record, p. 13.

[397] Verbatim Record, p. 15.

[398] Verbatim Record, p. 32.

[399] Verbatim Record p. 169.

[400] Cf. Chapter 1 above, paras. 148-149.

[401] Statements I, No 39.

[402] Statements I, No 67.

[403] See paras 247, 250, 267, 270, 272 above.

[404] Cf paras 251, 254, 255, 257 (the isolated statement to the contrary of Refugee B is only hearsay evidence and does not in principle invalidate the other testimonies obtained, which referred to other centres and other periods of time).

[405] Cf in particular paras 270, 271 and 273 above.

[406] Cf paras 266-269 above.

[407] Cf paras 260 and 262 above.

[408] Cf paras 261, 263 and 264 above.

[409] Application I, para. 3.

[410] Particulars I, paras 20 G and 22 A.

[411] Particulars I, paras 20 G and I.

[412] Particulars I, para. 20 I.

[413] Particulars II, para. 12 K.

[414] Ibid.

[415] See Part I, para. 23.

[416] See Part I, para. 40 and Appendix XIV..

[417] For the text of Art 5 see para. 220 above.

[418] See Chapter 4 B below.

[419] Cf paras 221-223 and 245 above.

[420] Cf UN Doc. S/11568, para. 51.

[421] See Chapter 1 above, in particular paras 135-149.

[422] Cf the Geneva Tripartite Declaration of 30 July 1974 and the Turkish note to UNFICYP of 4 August 1974, quoted in Chapter 1 above, paras 135-136.

[423] Cf Chapter 1 above, paras 138-139.

[424] Cf Chapter 1 above, paras 150 et seq.

[425] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 12, para. 5.

[426] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 15, para. 8 b.

[427] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 16, para. 8.

[428] UN Doc. S/11353/Add. 27, paras 4 and 5.

[429] UN Doc. S/11468/Add. 1, para. 8.

[430] Verbatim Record, pp. 40-57.

[431] Cf Verbatim Record, p. 49.

[432] Verbatim Record, p. 50.

[433] Verbatim Record, p. 52.

[434] Verbatim Record, p. 53

[435] Verbatim Record, p. 18.

[436] Verbatim Record, pp. 22-23.

[437] Verbatim Record, p. 108.

[438] Addendum, pp. 38-44.

[439] Verbatim Record, pp. 224 and 227.

[440] Addendum, p. 1.

[441] Addendum, p. 2.

[442] Addendum, p. 3.

[443] Addendum, p. 7.

[444] Addendum, p. 11.

[445] Addendum, p. 13.

[446] Statements I, Nos 3, 33, 35, 36, 37, 44, 55, 63, 79, 83, 86, 88, 90, 92, 93, 96. Statements II, Nos 1, 12, 16,(detained in Acrades camp).

[447] Statements I, Nos 3, 35, 36, 37, 79, 93.

[448] E.g. Statements I, Nos 86, 88, 92 (priest), 96 (head of village commission).

[449] Statements I, No 33.

[450] For details, see Chapter 4 B below, para. 389.

[451] For details, see Chapter 3 below, para. 330.

[452] Addendum, p. 99, Nos 2 and 7.

[453] Ibid., No 6.

[454] See Chapter 3 below, paras 316, 330-342 and 351.

[455] See para. 308 above.

[456] Cf International Review of the Red Cross, 14 (1974), 456.

[457] Ibid., p. 605.

[458] Cf International Review of the Red Cross, 14 (1974), pp. 456 and 605.

[459] Ibid., p. 605.

[460] Particulars I, p. 8.

 


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