The General Directorate of Foundations has agreed on the return of the patriarchate building in Gümüşsuyu to the Syriac Catholic community, the community learned during a meeting with President Abdullah Gül.
The Syriac community had taken the case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), but said the directorate’s move was a “nice gesture,” and that they would consider withdrawing the compensation case from the ECHR if no obstacles occurred.
A lawsuit has been in process for 25 years between the Syriac Catholic Community and Turkey, and after exhausting domestic remedies the community took the case to the ECHR four years ago.
The Syriac Catholic community received the good news during a meeting in which President Abdullah Gül hosted the leaders of minority foundations at the Huber Köşk in Tarabya on July 27. Speaking to the Hürriyet Daily News, Syriac Catholic Foundations head Zeki Paşademir said the director general of foundations, Adnan Ertem, announced during the meeting that the land title of the disputed building would be delivered to the Syriac Catholic community.
Paşademir said the building used to belong to Latin Catholics, but that with a government initiative in 1986 the Syriac community had signed a contract to rent the ruined building for 99 years. “Despite this, the General Directorate of Foundations opened a legal case against us in 1988. They said the building belonged to them. When we understood that the problem could not be solved through national legal procedures, we took the case to the European Court of Human Rights four years ago,” Ertem said..
| review | 02.08.2012, 08:54 | Nebu