KHRP’s expert fact-finding and trial observation delegations to the regions continue to lend a sense of international solidarity to the most disadvantaged living there, while warning perpetrators that their contravention of international human rights norms will not go unchecked. Through independent investigations of allegations and concerns, fact-finding and trial observation missions play an essential part in monitoring human rights abuses. The missions also help maintain vital links with victims and survivors of human rights abuse and their defenders, who are frequently also the subject of human rights abuse.
In 2010 we continued with the following fact-finding and trial observations in the Kurdish regions.
Three fact-finding missions to Turkey investigated:
- the general human rights situation in the Kurdish region, with a particular focus on women’s access to justice, impunity for agents of the state, barriers facing human rights defenders and the human rights impact of ‘high security zones’
- children’s rights, in follow-up to an earlier investigation in 2008, which highlighted Turkey’s continued failure to protect children, especially in the Kurdish regions
- the current situation regarding the Ilısu Dam project following the withdrawal of European financing in July 2009
One fact-finding mission to Northern Iraq examined:
- the impact of cross-border bombardments by Turkish and Iranian armed forces within the Kurdistan Regional Governate
Two missions observed the following domestic trial proceedings in Turkey:
- of 60 state officials (including prison guards, police officers and gendarmes), charged in connection with torture and death in custody of political activist Engin Çeber
- against Kerem Çakan, who was accused of the murder – which bore the hallmarks of an ‘honour killing’ - of his young wife