Leyla Zana and colleagues to be retried

27/03/2003   KurdishMedia.com

Ankara (KurdishMedia.com) Human Rights award winner and former Kurdish MP Leyla Zana and three other former Kurdish MPs are to face the Turkish judges on Friday. Zana, Hatip Dicle, Orhan Dogan and Selim Sadak were sentenced to 15 years in prison in 1994 on charges of supporting the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK).

The trial will take place at Ankara State Security Court (DGM) and European MPs and human rights defenders are expected to be present at the trial that has gained international attention.

Leyla Zana won the European Parliament’s Sakharov freedom of thought award in 1995. The European Court of Human Rights ruled in 2001 that the trial of Zana and her colleagues was unfair arguing that they were not able to have key witnesses questioned and were not informed in time of modifications to the charges against them. The four MPs were able to ask for a review of their trial after Turkey recently amended certain laws.