Prohibition of demonstration and imposition of administrative fine on a protester violates the right of assembly
Öğrü v. Turkey 17/10/2017 (no. 19631/12)
Administrative fine for participation in a demonstration organized in a prohibited location (outside the courts) for the creation of day nurseries at workplaces. Violation of freedom of assembly.
The applicant, Ozgur Keskin, is a Turkish national who was born in 1974 and lives in Izmir. The case concerned his complaint of having been deprived of an opportunity to participate in appeal proceedings regarding a labour dispute.
Mr Keskin worked for a company owned by Izmir City Council. On 19 March 2007 he resigned from his job to perform military service. He received a severance pay and signed a release, discharging the City Council from all liability. Shortly after being enlisted he was discharged from military service on health grounds and requested reinstatement into his previous job. When his requests were rejected by the Council he initiated proceedings before the Izmir Labour Court. He relied upon a clause of the collective bargaining agreement in force at the company which provided for the reinstatement of employees who had quit their jobs to perform their military service, provided they applied within three months from their discharge from the military.
In 2007, the Izmir Labour Court found in favour of Mr Keskin, in an oral hearing in the presence of both parties. The Council subsequently appealed this judgment. Mr Keskin was not notified of the appeal. Without holding a hearing, the Court of Cassation quashed the first-instance court’s decision and found in favour of the Council. No further appeal was possible against this decision.
Relying in particular on Article 6 § 1 (right to a fair hearing), Mr Keskin complained that he had been deprived of the opportunity to participate in the proceedings owing to the fact that he had not been notified of the appeal lodged by the City Council.
THE DECISION OF THE COURT
Violation of Article 6 § 1 – on account of the failure to communicate the cassation appeal to Mr Keskin
Just satisfaction: EUR 1,500 (non-pecuniary damage) and EUR 1,975 (costs and expenses)(echrcaselaw.com editing).