Versita

A PRISONER’S RIGHT TO BE RELEASED OR PLACED ON PAROLE: A COMMENT ON ÖCALAN V TURKEY (NO. 2) (18 MARCH 2014)

Jamil Ddamulira Mujuzi
Keywords: Parole, European Court of Human Rights, prisoners, comparative law, release ,

Abstract

The European Convention on Human Rights does not provide for a prisoner’s right to parole and no international or regional human rights instrument provides for this right. However, recently, in the case of Öcalan v Turkey (No. 2), one of the judges of the European Court of Human Rights interpreted the European Convention on Human Rights as providing for a prisoner’s right to parole. This is the first time that a judge of this court, and to the author’s best knowledge, a judge of a regional or international court, has expressly held that a prisoner has the right to parole. The author assesses this holding in the light of the jurisprudence or practice on the right to parole from the Human Rights Committee, and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights. In order to put the discussion in context, the author also highlights jurisprudence emanating from the European Court of Human Rights relevant to the relationship between parole and other human rights. The author recommends that the time has come for the right to parole to be recognised in human rights instruments.