The Arrested Lawyers Initiative produced a new factsheet on Turkey’s Criminal Peace Judgeships concluding followings:
The system of the criminal peace judges in Turkey does not meet international standards for independent and impartial review of detention.
- First, the body in charge of appointment and dismissal of the peace judges, the Council of Judges and Prosecutors, falls short of the international and regional standards pertaining to the independence of the judiciary, in particular in its structural dimension. This does not allow peace judges, who sit as single judges, to withstand influence or pressure from external powers.
- Second, reliable reports, including from international organisations suggest that, in practice, the method of selection of and decisions by peace judges show a situation of lack of institutional independence and leave room for pressures from political branches of the State.
- Finally, as identified by several international bodies, the closed appeal/opposition system in its structure and in its actual operation, does not mitigate this lack of independence but, rather, compounds it.
- These factors call into question the independence and capacity of judges of the peace to judicially review restrictions on the right to liberty under articles 5.3 and 5.4 ECHR and 9.3 and 9.4 ICCPR.