October 26, 2009
Press Release
from Iranian Refugees' Alliance, Inc.

Turkey releases Iranian refugees in belated compliance with European Court judgment

Two Iranian refugees held in detention in Turkey in defiance of a European Court of Human Rights ruling were finally released on Friday. The Court judgment of 22 September 2009 had condemned the detention of Messrs. Abdolkhani and Karimnia as arbitrary and unlawful. They had been held since June 2008 for more than sixteen months.

Subsequent to the Court ruling a further seven refugees and asylum-seekers, including a mother and her three children, held in related circumstances for up to eighteen months have also been released.

"We are relieved that these men, women and children, detained unlawfully in very poor conditions for so long, are finally free,” said Iranian Refugees’ Alliance’s director, Deljou Abadi, who represented Messrs. Abdolkhani and Karimnia before the Court. "But dozens of refugees and asylum seekers are still languishing in detention as a result of the Turkish authorities’ refusal to apply the principles set out in this judgment. The European Court’s 22 September judgment clearly established that detentions like this which are practiced absent clear legal provisions, time-limits or the opportunity for speedy judicial review are arbitrary and unlawful. We shall pursue the cases of those still held.”

Since 2007 a string of complaints have been filed against Turkey with the European Court of Human Rights by refugees and asylum-seekers in connection with arbitrary and unlawful deportation and detention practices. Ten of the complainants who have been kept in detention from thirteen to thirty months are still anxiously awaiting their release.

For Iranian Refugees' Alliance’s earlier press release in this regard please see http://www.irainc.org/pub/PR0909.html.

Iranian Refugees' Alliance, Inc., is a non-profit NGO in the U.S. assisting and advocating on behalf of Iranian asylum seekers and refugees nationally and internationally.


Iranian Refugees' Alliance, Inc.
Cooper Station
P.O.Box 316
New York, NY 10276-0316 USA

tel: 212-260-7460
fax: 267-295-7391
URL: www.irainc.org