Cyprus Mail

Greek Cypriot appeals to Council of Europe in property case

European Court of Human Rights

A Greek Cypriot has called on the committee of ministers of the Council of Europe to secure the immediate execution of a 2009 European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruling relating to his property in the north.

Professor Andreas Orphanides has sent a letter to the committee asking for the immediate restoration of his property, and compensation for Turkey’s failure to execute a relevant ECHR judgement.

In his letter, he invokes  a recent court decision, which found procedures before the north’s Immovable Property Commission (IPC) to be protracted and ineffective.

Orphanides’ letter comes ahead of a committee of ministers meeting in Strasbourg, between June 5-7, to review the implementation of ECHR judgements, and asks that effective action is taken for the immediate and unconditional execution of the court judgement by Ankara.

In particular he requests the immediate execution of a 2010 judgement, ordering Turkey to pay damages plus interest and to immediately restore his home and property. Orphanides is also seeking additional compensation from Turkey for each year from 2010 to 2018 that Ankara declined to execute the judgement.

He points out that under the European Convention on Human Rights, court judgements should be immediately executed by the respondent governments under the supervision of the committee of ministers, without intervention by any other body such as the IPC.

The IPC itself has since been found to be an ineffective remedy in December 2017 in the case Joannou v. Turkey.

Earlier this month, a number of Greek Cypriot applicants with property in Famagusta and Kyrenia, sent similar letters to the committee, calling on its members to look into their cases.

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