'The withdrawal of Davutoğlu's testimony decision is scandalous'

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  • 18:01 27 September 2022
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DİYARBAKIR - Condemning to the court's refusal of its decision to hear then-Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu as a witness in the Tahir Elçi murder case, Diyarbakir Bar Association made a statement and said: "This decision is a disgraceful scandal."

Diyarbakır Bar Association made a press statement in front of Diyarbakır Courthouse regarding the unlawful practices and decisions in the case file regarding the murder of Tahir Elçi. Erinç Sağkan, President of the Union of Turkish Bar Associations (TBB), and representatives of the Şırnak and Batman Siirt Bar Associations attended the statement, in which the banner reading "Tahir Elçi's file is not without an owner". Diyarbakir Bar Association Chairperson Nahit Eren, who made the statement, noted that the Tahir Elçi murder investigation and trial has progressed with scandals that will go into the world legal literature from the very begining.

Underlining that the prosecution, which filed a lawsuit for Tahir Elçi's words in nine days, filed a lawsuit four and a half years after the investigation into Elçi's murder, Eren said: "The evidence of the murder has been blackened; even this obfuscated evidence was not properly collected. The crime scene investigation was carried out three and a half months after Tahir Elçi was assassinated in front of the Dört Ayaklı Minare. We know very well that this case would not have been filed against the three police officers had it not been for the report prepared by the Forensic Architecture institution in London upon the request of the Diyarbakır Bar Association and submitted to the file.”


Eren said: "If a human rights defender and bar association president like Tahir Elçi is assassinated in a country, it is necessary to illuminate that assassination; It creates a duty on all institutions of the state that cannot be postponed or neglected. No one except the lawyers did their duty to shed light on the assassination of Elçi. Diyarbakir 10 High Criminal Court, which saw the case, considered it a duty to reject all the demands of the participating attorneys that could advance the case and enlighten the assassination."

Stating that they repeatedly demanded that Davutoğlu be heard at the hearing because of the then Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu's statements, Eren said:" the killing of Tahir Elçi was a political assassination and it was decided that he would be heart; however, with the interim hearing on September 19, the majority of the court reversed the decision to hear Davutoğlu. This decision is an embarrassing scandal. First of all, it is unacceptable to make a judgment by excluding the attorneys who participated in such an important case. The member of the Diyarbakir 10th High Criminal Court, who put an annotation against this decision, did not agree with the majority opinion on the grounds that... there has been no change in the scope of the file until now and instructions have been written about the witness. It is not possible to find an explanation for this turn within the legal procedures and practices. We consider that the court's reversal of its decision and that it once again hinders the progress of the case by refusing to hear such an important witness is a strong statement of will made by the members of the majority that they are not impartial and independent."

TBB President Erinç Sağkan, on the other hand, said that they were screaming for the murderers of Tahir Elçi, who was murdered in broad daylight for 7 years in the middle of the city, and said: "For 7 years, we have said that an effective investigation should be carried out, evidence should be collected and the evidence should be prevented from being blackened. At the end of 4.5 years, we saw that a prosecution was opened with the efforts of our bar association and our colleagues. But for some reason those records were never found. However, we continue to defend the right to life. It is desired that the defense authority be a tool for this unlawfulness while it is shown as if a trial is being carried out. However, we have always defended the right to a fair trial. We stand at the same point today."


Stating that they will continue to stand at the same point until Tahir Elçi's murderers are revealed and they receive the heaviest punishment, Sağkan said: "After the decision to be heard of a witness, the hearing of that witness was canceled by a majority of votes, without the parties being present without any justification. We will not allow the murder of Tahir Elçi to be used as a political tool."

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