European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) condemned Turkey to damages amounting to 9 000 Euros regarding a disciplinary containment practice -dubbed as 'disco'- by the military.
The Strasbourg court's ruling can set a precedent about the widespread practice, causing fear among regulars doing their compulsory military service and often used as a threat by military commanders.
Restraining of liberty can be ruled only by a court and a procedure of appeal against the decision must be present, the ECHR ruling said.
The ruling brings about questions regarding the Military Criminal Code, former military judge Ümit Kardaş told bianet.
According to Article 171 of the code, superior ranking military officials even have the right to temporarily arrests on grounds of disciplinary action. Kardaş argues that the Military Criminal Code should be scrutinized and abolished.
He says that only military offences such as desertion and disobedience to orders could be included in the Military Criminal Code. On the contrary, the current legislation has duplicated many articles of the Criminal Code, thus rendering them as military offences.
According to Kardaş, stripping disciplinary superior officers from their authority to rule punishments would solve the problem.
"From now on, the ECHR will condemn Turkey in each case regarding this practice. Therefore, it's no longer possible to employ Article 171 of the Military Criminal Code as it will be directly condemned in Strasbourg."
The case in question dates back to 2007, when a soldier left barracks without permission and was condemned to seven days imprisonment according to Article 171. The soldier's appeals against the ruling were turned down by superior officers and he had filed an application to the ECHR. (EK/EÜ)
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