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21 May, 2019
 
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Grand Chamber to rule in Guzelyurtlu case

Cyprus and Turkey being sued for not working together to solve a cold murder case

Newsroom

The European Court of Hunan Rights will deliver a Grand Chamber judgment next week in the Guzelyurtlu case, with experts anticipating a more direct ruling than previously issued.

The unsolved murder case went before the Grand Chamber of the ECHR last March, with authorities north and south in Cyprus as well as Turkey being accused of refusing to cooperate to solve the crime.

On 15 January 2005, a Turkish Cypriot family living in the Republic of Cyprus was found brutally murdered along the Nicosia-Larnaca highway in the south. The victims, 52-year-old banker Elmas Guzelyurtlu, his wife Zerin and daughter Eylul, aged 50 and 15 respectively, were believed to have been murdered by members of the underworld in the north.

The court previously said it was not inclined to assess how much each side tried to cooperate in solving the crime, but high expectations hint at a more direct ruling this time

The case was filed in 2007 by relatives of the victims, represented by two UK-based lawyers - a Greek Cypriot and a Turkish Cypriot - who say the Republic of Cyprus, along with Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot administration in the north “failed to conduct an effective investigation into the killing of their relatives.”

Last April, ECHR judges ruled unanimously in the case that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot administration, which is recognised only by Turkey, had violated Article 2 of the European Convention, which is the right to life and prompt investigation of a crime. They also found the Republic of Cyprus had violated the same Article with a non-unanimous 5-2 vote.

Both Cyprus and Turkey requested a referral to the Grand Chamber, with public hearings followed by private deliberations. The court previously said it was not inclined to assess how much each side tried to cooperate in solving the crime. But observers said there were high expectations from the Grand Chamber to issue a more direct ruling next time.

The judgment is expected to be delivered on Tuesday, January 29, during a public hearing in Strasbourg.

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