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Human Rights Court Says Ocalan's Trial in Turkey Was Unfair


Europe's top human rights court has ruled that Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan did not receive a fair trial in Turkey.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg recommended that Turkey retry Ocalan.

A Turkish court in 1999 sentenced Ocalan to death for treason, but the sentence was later commuted to life in prison when Turkey abolished the death penalty. Ankara blamed Ocalan for leading a 15-year long Kurdish rebellion for autonomy in southeastern Turkey in which more than 30,000 people died.

The human rights court said the trial was not fair because prosecutors denied Ocalan access to his lawyers. It also said transferring Ocalan to to an island prison six years ago constituted inhumane treatment.

Reacting to the ruling, a Turkish government spokesman said Ankara will undertake the procedures that the law requires.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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