The fifth hearing in the killing of Ali Ismail Korkmaz will be held tomorrow, November 26, in Kayseri, Turkey.
Ali Ismail was a victim of the horrendous police violence that accompanied the suppression of the Gezi protests in 2013. In a statement to authorities before he died, he described the attack:
Five or six people came up to me, they beat me with clubs on my head, back, shoulder and legs. I fell to the ground….Yesterday I didn’t have difficulty in speaking, but today I can’t remember. One of my teeth is loose because of the incident. My head hurts, I have difficulty speaking. I don’t know who beat me or why. They were wearing civilian clothes. I want to make a complaint
Korkmaz was admitted to a hospital after making his statement, but soon fell into a coma. He died on July 10, 2013.
As Amnesty’s researcher on Turkey, Andrew Gardner, described in a blog last winter, Turkish authorities seemed determined to undermine the quest for justice in the case. Following the attack, the Governor of Eskisehir said that police hadn’t been involved and that Ali Ismail Korkmaz had been beaten up ‘by his friends.’ Footage from a CCTV camera was deleted in the days following the incident, but was subsequently recovered by experts from the gendarmerie. Continue reading
Posted in Amnesty International, Andrew Gardner, Excessive Force, Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Turkey
Tagged Ali Ismail Korkmaz, Andrew Gardner, Gezi Park, impunity, kayseri, Trial, Turkey
A guest blog from our colleague at Amnesty International – Netherlands on the most recent hearing in the Taksim Solidarity case:
It was like an ironic cartoon. We were some forty people brushing up against each other in the doorframe of the small courtroom, trying to peek inside as we were barred from going in by a red line and two nervous guards. The only ones allowed entering were lawyers in their shiny robes. The whole scene resembled a puppet show of a twisted sort. We could see the judge, the prosecutor, the defendants and the lawyers. All actors were playing out their roles, but we couldn’t understand a thing. The Turkish judicial system in a nutshell.
Posted in Amnesty International, Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Taksim, Turkey, Uncategorized
Tagged Cansu Yapici, Erdogan, Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Taksim Solidarity, Twitter
Fifty-six-year-old conscientious objector Ali Fikri Işık is due to appear in front of a Turkish Military Court on October 22, facing three separate charges of ‘desertion’ that could carry a prison sentence of some two-and-a-half years. When Ali was first arrested in June of 2012 for refusing military service in 1993, he told the military court that he was a conscientious objector who had been imprisoned and tortured after the 1980 military coup, and opposes militarism and “refuses to take part in the war.” Since then he has served time in prison and continues to declare his conscientious objection to military service. As Ali faces the Turkish courts once again, Amnesty has issued an urgent action and calls on you to help support the cause of freedom of expression and conscience in Turkey (an electronic version of the action is available in Turkish, here).
Ali Fikri Isik
While protesters in Turkey are demonstrating against the perceived lack of action of the Turkish government against IS with many protesters dead after violent clashes with the police, the trial against the civilians and police officers who killed another protester during another protest, last year’s Gezi Park protest, continues.
This Thursday, the fourth hearing in the case of Ali Ismail Korkmaz took place. Ruhat Sena Aksener and I were present to observe the trial for Amnesty International to increase the chance of a fair trial and to see that justice will be done. Continue reading
Amnesty International issued Urgent Action regarding the death of an Afghan asylum-seeker and other asylum-seekers who are at risk of being returned to Afghanistan. Please encourage your friends and family to join this urgent letter writing campaign before August 5.
Lutfillah Tadjik, a 17 year-old Afghan asylum seeker was allegedly beaten to death by a Turkish police officer from the Foreigners Directorate Returns Centre in Van on May 31. Now, other six Afghans asylum-seekers who witnessed the assault are at risk of being returned to Afghanistan without having access to the refugee status determination procedure and before the ongoing investigation into Lutfillah Tadjik’s death has been completed.
Please write immediately in Turkish or your own language:
- Calling on the authorities to conduct a prompt, thorough and independent investigation into the circumstances of Lutfillah Tadjik’s ill-treatment and death;
- Urging them not to remove any witnesses to the assault from Turkey, and ensure that they receive adequate protection against any threats or intimidation;
- Urging them not to return any of the Afghan detainees, in particular those who were witnesses to the assault, pending a prompt and fair examination of their asylum claims under the terms of the Foreigners and International Protection Law No. 6458 and in line with international standards;
- Calling on them to ensure that asylum-seekers under 18 are treated in accordance with international law, in particular the principle of the best interests of the child.
Please send appeals to the following authorities BEFORE AUGUST 5:
Van Chief Prosecutor Mehmet Kaya (Salutation: Dear Prosecutor)
Van Cumhuriyet Başsavcısı
Fax: +90 (0) 432 212 04 89
+90 (0) 432 215 20 07
Minister of Interior Mr. Efkan Ala (Salutation: Dear Minister)
Fax: +90 (0) 312 418 17 95
And copies to:
Minister of Justice Mr. Bekir Bozdağ
06659 Ankara, Turkey
Fax: +90 (0)312 419 33 70
For those who live in the US, please send copy to:
Ambassador Serdar Kılıç
Turkish Embassy in Washington, DC
2525 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
If you live outside the US, please check diplomatic representatives in your country by clicking here.
This Urgent Action can be accessed on Amnesty International website here.
The army of police, the limits on freedom of transport, the deserted center of the city. A year after Gezi, this is the face of the new Turkey, where dissent is stifled with overwhelming force and massive police presence.
Clearly, the Turkish government has learned lessons from the protests which shook the country a year ago. Unfortunately, they are the wrong ones: it has only redoubled its efforts to crush dissent and has learned to employ overwhelming police force to prevent outbreaks of dissent in locales that are accessible to international media.
With the shocking images of last year’s crackdown fading from the world’s memory, attention has slowly shifted elsewhere. Amnesty International, in a lengthy and well-researched report issued today, entitled Turkey: Adding injustice to injury: One year on from the Gezi Park protests in Turkey, ensures that the true nature of Turkey’s post-Gezi crackdown are clear.
Turkey: Adding injustice to injury: One year on from the Gezi Park protests in Turkey
Posted in Amnesty International, Excessive Force, Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Press Freedom, Taksim, Turkey
Tagged Abuses, Amnesty International, Gezi Park, Gezi Park protests, Turkey
Used by permission. © Tolga Sezgin / Nar Photos
Some very important issues related to Turkish human rights coming up next week. We’ll do our best to keep the blog up to date with current information: Continue reading
Posted in Amnesty International, Andrew Gardner, Excessive Force, Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Taksim, Turkey
Tagged Amnesty, Amnesty International, Andrew Gardner, Gezi Park, Selmin Caliskan, Taksim
Commemorating Abdullah Comert Adnan Onur Acar / NarPhotos Used by permission
Check out my new blog on the anniversary of Gezi on our main Human Rights Now page. I write, in part:
On the first anniversary of the Gezi Protests and their brutal suppression in Turkey, central Istanbul resembled nothing so much as a city under occupation. Public transportation into the city center was cancelled. Ferry service from the Asian to the European side of the metropolis was ended by the late afternoon. You could leave, but you couldn’t come back.
This is the image of the new Turkey, where dissent is stifled with overwhelming force and massive police presence.
A year ago today, Ali Ismail Korkmaz was beaten to death by police. From the start, Turkish authorities seemed determined to undermine the quest for justice in the case. Following the attack, the Governor of Eskisehir said that police hadn’t been involved and that Ali Ismail Korkmaz had been beaten up ‘by his friends.’ Footage from a CCTV camera was deleted in the days following the incident, but was subsequently recovered by experts from the gendarmerie. Continue reading
Posted in Amnesty International, Andrew Gardner, Excessive Force, Freedom of Expression, Gezi Park, Taksim, Turkey, Uncategorized
Tagged Ali Ismail, Ali Ismail Korkmaz, Amnesty, Andrew Gardner, Gezi Park, impunity, Taksim, Turkey