Constitutional Court of Turkey announced on Wednesday that previous penalisation of some politicians for speeches in Kurdish language violates their constitutional rights.
An inquirement was launched by a Diyarbakir prosecutor in 2009 during a meeting which three politicians introduced their campaign in Kurdish for local elections, and a case was filed against them.
While the case was on trial, the Constitutional Court abolished a clause in the Political Parties Law which penalised political parties that use non-Turkish language during their political activities in 2012.
A prison sentence was imposed by the Diyarbakir court for three politicians despite the Constitutional Court’s modification and objection of convicts to the decision that was not sustained.
The defendants filed separate individual applications to the Constitutional Court, arguing the ruling of Diyarbakir court violates their freedom of speech.
The ruling of Constitutional Court said, “Freedom of expression carries vital importance for democracy and that the language used is inseparable part of freedom of expression.”