MLSA lodges submission on "committing a crime without being a member" to Committee of Ministers

MLSA lodges submission on "committing a crime  without being a member"  to Committee of Ministers


The Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA) has submitted a briefing note to the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, which will be reviewed in March, regarding the Işıkırık Group cases. This briefing note, referred to as "9.2 Notification," concerns the implementation of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgments in Turkey.

The Committee of Ministers is the body of the Council of Europe (CoE) that monitors compliance with ECHR judgments. The Işıkırık Group cases pertain to Articles 220/6 and 220/7 of the Turkish Penal Code (TPC), which involve punishing individuals who commit crimes on behalf of an organization without being a member and knowingly and willingly aiding the organization, as if they were members of the organization.

Defendants in these cases were convicted for participating in peaceful demonstrations called by an organization deemed illegal, and for making positive statements about this organization. They were also convicted and sentenced for being members of a terrorist organization (under TPC Article 314), despite the lack of evidence proving actual membership in the organization.

The ECHR had previously stated that these articles did not meet the criterion of legality. The Constitutional Court of Turkey (AYM), on October 26, 2023, annulled the provision regulating the crime of "committing a crime on behalf of an organization without being a member" under Article 220/6.

Turkey, in its response to the Committee of Ministers dated February 21, 2024, stated that the new judicial reform package would put an end to these human rights violations.

Unpredictability increased with the new draft law
However, the MLSA Legal Unit disagrees with Turkey's response, stating that it does not reflect the truth. In the briefing note sent to the Committee of Ministers, it was reported that the same provision was reintroduced in the 8th judicial package discussed in the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TBMM), and that the situation has become even more complicated.

What is the 9.2 notification?
Countries that are parties to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) commit to implementing the judgments of the ECHR, but the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe monitors whether this implementation is carried out properly. The Committee of Ministers takes into account the views of different sectors concerning the cases in question during this monitoring activity.

The opinions and suggestions of relevant civil society organizations are also important in determining whether the decisions on violations have been implemented. The process known as Rule 9.2 Notification allows civil society organizations and national institutions and organizations concerned with human rights to participate in this process by submitting their views. This contribution is not limited to the assessment of the case but also includes suggestions for implementation.


Medya ve Hukuk Çalışmaları Derneği (MLSA) haber alma hakkı, ifade özgürlüğü ve basın özgürlüğü alanlarında faaliyet yürüten bir sivil toplum kuruluşudur. Derneğimiz başta gazeteciler olmak üzere mesleki faaliyetleri sebebiyle yargılanan kişilere hukuki destek vermektedir.