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Cyprus

Turkey’s compensation debt to refugee tops 200,000 euros

Titina Loizidou

Turkey still owes refugee Titina Loizidou more than €200,000 as part of damages awarded to her by the European Court of Human Rights for not being able to use her property in the occupied part of Cyprus, her lawyer said on Wednesday.

Loizidou’s lawyer, Achilleas Demetriades, refuted Turkish claims that amounts due to his client and other refugees awarded as damages by the ECHR have long been settled.

Last week, Turkey sent a document to the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe ahead of its meeting due to take place between December 5 and 7, in Strasbourg, asking to end the supervision of the judgement implementation in the cases of Loizidou, Michael Tymvios and Andromachi Alexandrou, claiming that amounts due have been disbursed for some years now.

In response, Demetriades sent the Committee of Ministers a letter on Tuesday saying that as regards Loizidou, the disbursement of payment as damages for the period of January 29, 1987 until January 22, 1990 is still pending. The amount sought is €195,314.78 in actual damages while an amount of €13,021.01 is sought for moral damages, plus interest accrued and expenses.

Demetriades told the Cyprus News Agency that once the European Court of Justice had ruled in favour of Loizidou, damages for loss of use of her property were disbursed for the years between 1990 and 1998.
“Loizidou was given no other remedy, as she should have been given,” Demetriades said “Therefore, Loizidou seeks rent from 1987 to 1990.”

In another letter, the lawyer also raises another 12 cases which concern properties in the occupied area of the island, which will be reviewed by the Committee of Ministers next week. He reiterates that the damages due should be a priority.

The European Court of Human Rights sentenced Turkey in numerous cases, brought forward by Greek Cypriots, concerning the violation of their fundamental human rights, following the 1974 invasion.

Loizidou filed her application in 1989. The Court ruled in December 1996 that Turkey is guilty of human rights violations and ordered Ankara to allow Loizidou access to her property to enjoy it peacefully and pay her damages. In 1998 the Court said Turkey should pay compensation amounting to 900.000 dollars to Loizidou for loss of use of her property.

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