light and word of Human Rights for background

Severe human right violations by the Turkish state

The Human Rights Association (IHD) and the Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (TIHV), published the 2015 human rights violation report that was prepared during the 10-17 December Week of Human Rights. Ozturk Turkdogan, the general president of IHD who disclosed the report declared “From the perspective of human rights there is a demand that needs to be met from Turkey. That is to urgently establish peace. When peace is not ensured the right to live is not protected, when the right to live is being abused it is impossible to speak of other human rights”. Moreover Turkdogan, said that since there was no intervention in the human right violations conducted in 2015, the United Nations’ system has collapsed.

The end of the Kurdish-Turkish Peace Process increased the violations

Severe cases of human right violations were experienced during 2015: In Diyarbakir (5 dead, tens injured) , in Suruc (33 dead, tens injured) and in the Ankara massacre (100 dead, hundreds injured). With the end of the Kurdish-Turkish Peace Process by the President of Turkey Recep T Erdogan, hundreds of people were shot in the streets by the law enforcement units, in the renewed conflicts. Tens of times civilians and the PKK were bombed on Iraq grounds. Curfew was declared in tens of Kurdish towns within Turkey. During the curfew period water and electric outages, lack of basic food supply was experienced. Medication and treatment to those injured by the attacks were not allowed by the police itself on the ground of the incident, whereas the dead could not be buried due to curfew prohibitions. During the blockade of towns and neighborhoods by the law enforcements units civilian youths, women, elderly and children were massacred. Journalists were arrested and freedom of press was violated. The refugees in Turkey are facing dramatic circumstances.

The report is alarming

With AKP’s realization of the oppressive “Internal Security Law” there was an increase of the human rights violations between the 1st of January and the 5th of December of 2015.

The data from IHD and TIHV are the following:

  • 173 fatalities and 226 injured were the result of extrajudicial executions, random shooting or shooting of civilians that failed to comply with the law enforcement unit’s orders.
  • There were 135 incidents involving deaths and 191 events involving injuries.
  • As a result of the suicide attacks, 5 died in Diyarbakir, 33 died in Suruc, the Ankara attack on the 10th October had 100 fatalities. The above three suicide bombs resulted in 138 dead and 929 injured.
  • Four people died while in custody
  • Murders committed by unknown perpetrators have resulted in the death of nineteen people
  • A minimum of 28 people have died from various reasons while imprisoned
  • 33 soldiers have died under suspicious conditions while in military conscription
  • 5 people have died and 22 have been injured as a result of unknown perpetrator bomb or mine explosions
  • As a result of the conflict, soldiers, police officers and paramilitary ranger in the total number of 171 have lost their lives. Along the same lines 195 militants and 157 civilians died, raising the total number of fatalities to 523 people
  • 255 women have died as a result of male violence until the 23rd of November 2015
  • Four lives were lost as a result of hate crimes, racist attacks and lynching
  • Work accidents/murders have cost the death of 1593 workers until the 1st of December
  • A minimum of 16 asylum seekers and refugees have lost their lives while crossing the borders and 160 of them were injured
  • 1433 people were tortured while held in custody

According to Human Rights Foundation of Turkey 1 million 299 thousand 61 people were affected from the curfew which was declared 52 times (16 August to 12 December 2015) in 7 different provinces and 17 districts.

Diyarbakir: Curfew was declared 31 times in 8 districts

  • Lice – 7 times (26.427 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Silvan – 6 times (86,663 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Sur – 6 times (121,75 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Bismil – 4 times (112,461 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Hani – 4 times (32,413 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • * Yenişehir – 1 time (2014 nüfus sayımına göre 206,534 kişi yaşıyor)
  • * Dicle – 1 time (40,33 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • * Hazro – 2 times (17,54 people live according to the 2014 census)

Mardin: Curfew was declared 9 times in 3 districts

  • Nusaybin – 5 times (116,68 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Dargeçit – 2 times (28,601 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Derik – 2 times (61,32 people live according to the 2014 census)

Şırnak: Curfew was declared 5 times in 2 districts

  • Cizre – 4 times (132, 857 people live according to the 2014 census)
  • Silopi – 1 time (121,11 people live according to the 2014 census)

Hakkari: Curfew was declared 4 times in 1 district

  • Yüksekova – 4 times (117,44 people live according to the 2014 census)

Turkey continues its ill treatment and torture The torture continues under the supervision of the security forces in detention centers, prisons and in military barracks. Moreover, with the excessive and disproportionate intervention of law enforcement units, officers commit torture and ill treatment against the participants in demonstrations publicly in the streets. With the Kurdish problem peaking the conflicts have increased and so have the custody procedures, however not implementing protection of human rights, torture and ill treatment while in custody have been legitimized. During the first 11 months of 2015 560 people reported to have suffered torture, 347 of whom were tortured or ill-treated within the current year. According to the data acquired by the Human Rights Association (IHD) during the first 11 months of 2015 433 reported to be tortured while under custody but outside detention centers. Impunity is still the greatest obstacle in the struggle against torture.

The violations in the context of the Kurdish problem are severe

The unlawful curfews that have been implemented in the Kurdish provinces and districts have left the people living in those regions devoid of water, electric, food supply and health services. The right to share information and communicate was restricted. The fact that the security forces employed special warfare methods and the numerous fatalities of civilian youths, elderly, women and children is worrisome. Because of the afore mentioned extraordinary war situation that was granted continuity in cities and towns, the economic and social life has completely collapsed.

According to the report of IHD and THIV:

  • In 2015 523 people died of whom 171 were soldiers, police officers and civil rangers, 195 were militants and 157 were civilians.
  • 553 people were injured of whom 338 belonged to the security forces, 145 were militants and 70 were civilians.
  • 6744 people were detained and 285 were arrested

Political genocide operations continue

17 councilors have been arrested, 9 of them convicted and 15 dismissed from duty. The number of civil rangers has increased. According to KCK investigations, from the operations against HDP/DBP and HDK, 6744 people have been taken into custody and 1285 have been arrested.

Freedom of thought and expression severely opressed

Access to 105958 websites was prohibited. 30 journalist are still in prison. Most recently, two journalist from the Nokta magazine were arrested. The number of prohibited websites in 2015 was 105958, whereas in 2014 it was 40773 and in 2013 it was 35001. The increase is worrisome.

Violence against Kurds and dissidents

Turkdogan highlights the fact that in 2015, 432 party offices were attacked, out of those 417 were HDP offices, 11 were belonged to AKP and 4 were CHP offices, furthermore he adds: “police forces this year attacked peaceful demonstrations with water cannons, chemical weapons, plastic and real bullets resorting to excessive and disproportionate violence. Different social groups such as women, LGBT, Kurdish, Alevi people and workers were subjected to violence without exception. As a result of these brutal attacks 210 people have been injured, 3377 have been take to custody and 201 people have been arrested. In total 256 organized events were forbidden.

The F type Prison of Imrali should be closed immediately

Turkdogan reminded that when AKP came in to the power the number of prisoners was 59429, according to the most recent information from the Ministry of Justice the current amount of prisoners is 164461.

  • The number of children detainees and convicts has reached 2165.
  • As a result of torture, suicide, ill treatment, accidents, negligence, disease, conflicts between prisoners etc. a minimum 28 people lost their life.
  • Additionally, the 22nd January 2007 (45/1) legislation of the Ministry of Justice prescribing that 10 prisoners should socialise for 10 hours each week is still not implemented effectively.
  • The F type Prison of Imrali, where isolation is applied very frequently, should be closed immediately.

282 women have lost their life

During the first 11 months of 2015 in all work places 1593 workers died as result of work accidents/murders. Turkey, ranks 23rd in the list of countries whose carbon gas emissions affect global climate change. Turkdogan, the general president of IHD, who addressed the following issue as well, drew attention to the fact that during the first 11 months of 2015, 282 women have lost their life, 367 women have been injured and 132 women were raped and abused.

Without peace and an end to Erdogan’s dictatorship the right to life cannot be protected

Even though 2015 is the 68th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, with Kurds being primarily the target, all democratic and oppressed social groups are being tortured and suppressed. Everyone who is opposing Erdogan’s authority and AKP’s fascist rule is under serious threat. Credit has been given to Turkey and its government by the European Union regarding Turkey’s accession to the EU, regardless that Turkey has been violating all democratic criteria. It is still receiving EU’s support. It is not understandable why the European countries do not take action against the Turkish government that is cooperating with a barbaric force like ISIS, which is an enemy of all humanity.

Not taking any action against the AKP government that is committing crimes against the Kurdish people daily and remaining silent is unethical.
We are calling everyone to participate in the struggle to put an end to the isolation that the Turkish state is imposing on the Kurdish Leader and to initiate the Kurdish-Turkish peace process. Even though many countries and international associations have called for a peace process, none of them took action when Turkey failed to materialize the call.

We call all the democratic organizations and international foundations to stand against AKP and Erdogan’s dictatorship and support the peoples resisting for democracy. As long as peace for the Kurdish people is not ensured and an end is not put to Turkey’s policies in Syria and Iraq, EU countries are facing a threat. ISIS, that is taking advantage of Turkey’s approach in the Middle East, is bloodsheding in the EU. To stop ISIS, the support that Turkey is giving to ISIS needs to be halted and condemned.