The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in Strasbourg has asked the Albanian government not to deport Selami Simsek to Turkey before the court issues a final verdict on his case.
Albanian News 24 TV reported that the security measure request was communicated to Albanian authorities and Simsek’s lawyer on Friday.
Simsek was arrested along with another Turkish citizen, Harun Celik, while travelling to Rinas Airport, transit to Canada with fake passports.
They both claimed asylum in Albania on grounds of fears of persecution by the Turkish government for alleged participation in the Gulen Movement, which Turkey has declared a terrorist organization.
The Albanian government deported Celik to Turkey, but the ensuing pressure by domestic and international actors has not allowed the same to be done with Simsek.
The Albanian Ombudsman said the government had violated all possible laws. The United Nations said that Albania is complicit in Extraterritorial Abductions and forced disappearances of Turkish nationals.
On July 2, Albanian authorities rejected Simsek’s asylum application.
He sued the Ministry of Interior for the rejection, and asked the court to reverse the decision and grant him asylum.
The Administrative Court then rejected his lawsuit against the Albanian government, and Simsek appealed the case.
If the appeals rules against him, he will then be extradited to Turkey, at the request of Turkish authorities.