CAT/C/66/D/846/2017

1.1
The complainant is Elmas Ayden, a Turkish national born on 14 April 1958. He is
currently being detained in Morocco, pending extradition, pursuant to an extradition request
from Turkey. The complainant states that his extradition to Turkey, where he claims to be
at risk of torture, would constitute a violation by Morocco of its obligations under article 3
of the Convention. Morocco ratified the Convention on 21 June 1993 and declared that it
recognized the competence of the Committee under articles 21 and 22 of the Convention on
19 October 2006. The complainant is represented by counsel, Mr. El kbir Lemseguem.
1.2
In his complaint, the complainant asked the Committee to take interim measures. On
20 October 2017, in application of rule 114 (1) of its rules of procedure, the Committee
asked the State party not to extradite the complainant to Turkey while the complaint was
being considered.
1.3
On 15 November 2018, the Committee was informed that the complainant was
reportedly suffering from serious health problems, was not receiving the care that he
needed and, speaking neither Arabic nor French, did not have access to an interpreter
during visits by health professionals, which prevented him from informing them of the
symptoms and medical difficulties that he was experiencing. In accordance with rule 114 (1)
of its rules of procedure, the Committee requested the State party to urgently adopt the
necessary protective measures to ensure that the complainant had access to the medical care
he required and to the assistance of an interpreter for communication with medical
personnel. The Committee also requested the State party to transmit the complainant’s
medical report to his counsel as soon as possible so that his family could have access to it.
On 1 February 2019, the State party informed the Committee that the complainant remained
in detention and that he enjoyed all the safeguards necessary for the exercise of his rights,
particularly regarding his health.
The facts as presented by the complainant
2.1
The complainant is a married businessman who, in 2016, moved to Tétouan in
Morocco, where he set up a company that sold ice cream.
2.2
On 26 July 2017, while on his way to his shop, the complainant was arrested by the
Moroccan police, pursuant to an arrest warrant issued by the Turkish authorities under
registration No. 2754/2016, for being a member of the Hizmet movement. When his
identity had been established, the Tétouan public prosecutor informed him of the reasons
for his arrest and referred him to the Court of Cassation (the court responsible for ruling on
extradition requests), which ordered that he be detained in Salé 2 prison. On 13 September
2017, the complainant appeared before the Moroccan Court of Cassation, assisted by his
lawyer, Mr. El kbir Lemseguem. The defence essentially argued that the request for
extradition was politically motivated, basing its arguments on the fact that the Turkish case
file contained absolutely no evidence of his membership of the Hizmet movement, which
had been classified as a terrorist organization by the Turkish State.
2.3
The Turkish authorities put forward evidence that was unsubstantiated both in law
and in fact. They claimed that the complainant was an active member of the Hizmet
movement and a member of the Makiad businessmen’s association in Malatya and the
Battalgazi educational foundation. The Turkish authorities reported that he subscribed to
the Zaman newspaper and that books by Fethullah Gülen had been seized from his home in
Turkey. They also accused him of making deposits in Bank Asya and of fleeing to the
United States of America after the attempted coup in 2016. The complainant states that his
membership of the Makiad and Battalgazi foundations, which were among the most
prestigious associations in Malatya, was in compliance with Turkish law, and that he does
not know whether the two foundations were working for the Hizmet movement.
2.4
The complainant’s trips outside Turkey were for tourism or business purposes. He
denies being an active member of the Hizmet movement and states that the Fethullah Gülen
books that were seized at his home are readily available for purchase. As his passport
shows, he never fled Turkey for the United States. His subscription to the Zaman
newspaper is entirely in keeping with the law, as it would be for any citizen who takes a
newspaper published in accordance with Turkish law. It is also legal for him to pay his

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GE.19-10782

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