Human Rights Foundation of Turkey Documentation Center[1][2][3][4][5]

21 – 23 March 2020 Daily Human Rights Report

(03/221) Torture and Ill-Treatment in Prison…

It is learned from the news coverage of March 20, 2020 that in Şırnak T Type Prison, number of prisons is above capacity, prisons are given hot water only twice a week, prisoners are not given Yeni Yaşam newspaper that they demand, and the number of books per prisoner is limited to 10. It is also stated in the news reports that Yılmaz Uğur, a prisoner who rejects to be medically examined in handcuffs, was subjected to physical violence of wardens on the way back from hospital.

It is learned from the news coverage of March 20, 2020 that, political prisoners in Trabzon Beşikdüzü T Type Prison were threatened by wardens saying “If we die we will take you along”. It is also stated in the news reports that prisoners were not given cleaning supplies and disinfectants despite of Covid-19 pandemic.

It is learned from the news coverage of March 20, 2020 that, correction officers search wards in Tekirdağ F Type Prisons No 1 and 2, without using face masks and gloves despite of Covid-19 pandemic.

Ministry of Justice declared on March 20, 2020 that there are no prisoners “tested positive for corona”.

It is learned from the news coverage of March 21, 2020 that, in Silivri Prison No 5, prisoners were prevented from social, cultural and sports rights; visit periods were arbitrarily shortened; food given to prisoners is not sufficient and hygienic; prisoners are not given hot water; and Yeni Yaşam newspaper is not given to prisoners.

It is learned from the news coverage of March 21, 2020 that, People’s Democratic Party (HDP) Mardin co-chair Perihan Ağaoğlu and Musa Alkan, are transferred from Mardin E Type Prison to Urfa T Type Prison, although Ministry of Justice postponed transfers of prisoners for 2 weeks as of March 13, 2020.

(03/222) Hunger Strike in Prison…

It is learned from the news coverage of March 20, 2020 that, 3 prisoners in Giresun Espiye L Type Prison are on hunger strike in turns since March 18, 2020, to demand return of their medications which were seized and to be referred to physician.

(03/223) Police Intervention Against “I Want My Job Back” Protest in Ankara…

The police intervened the press declarations of public labourers who had been dismissed by a state of emergency decree and have been struggling 1230 days to regain their jobs, in front of Human Rights Monument in Yüksel Street on March 20, 21, and 22, 2020 at 13.30, and forced people away from the monument by using physical violence.

(03/224) Police Intervention to a Protest in Ankara…

The police intervened the press declaration of Ankara Chamber of Independent Accountants and Financial Consultants (ASMMO), to protest discriminations with regard to precautions for Covid-19 pandemic, in front of Ministry of Treasure and Finance on March 20, 2020; and detained 4 people (ASMMO chair Ali Şahin, Nurali Keleş, Uğur Taşkıran and Faruk Adıgüzel). Detained people are released on the same day.

03/225) Prevention of Human Rights Defenders’ Event in Istanbul…

“F sit-in”, which is organized for the 417th time by Human Rights Association (IHD) Istanbul Branch Prison Watch Committee, to demand release of ill prisoners, on March 21, 2020, is prevented by the police. The police obstructed all the streets around Galatasaray Square. Human rights defenders made the press declaration in front of IHD Istanbul office.

(03/226) Detained Journalists in Kocaeli…

SES Kocaeli newspaper’s chief editor İsmet Çiğit and author Güngör Aslan, are detained on March 22, 2020, on the grounds of a news report on Covid-19 pandemic. 2 journalists are released after statement procedures at the police.

(03/227) Detained People in Urfa for Newroz Celebration…

On March 22, 2020, 8 people including 7 children are detained in house raids in Suruç district of Urfa, on the grounds of Newroz celebrations. 8 people are released on the same day provided that 2 of them are on judicial control conditions. Detained people are: Ş. Y., İ. C., A. E., M. A., M. B., A. I., E. K. and Ö. K.

(03/228) Detained People in Bingöl…

On March 21, 2020, 3 people (Mehmet Morsümbül [67], Sidar Serinyel and Mazlum Serinyel) are detained, on the grounds of a denouncement, in house raids in Gözeler village of Bingöl’s central district.

(03/229) Kemal Kurkut Case…

The trial of the case at Diyarbakır Heavy Penal Court No 7, against police officer Y.Ş., for killing university student Kemal Kurkut by shooting him behind his back during Newroz celebrations in Diyarbakır in 2017, is not held on March 24, 2020, and adjourned to June 16, 2020. Police officer Y. Ş. is charged with ‘killing on probable intention’ and the indictment demands life imprisonment for this charge.

(03/230) Release Decision for Osman Kavala…

On March 20, 2020, Istanbul Penal Court of Peace No 3 ruled to release Osman Kavala, chief of executive board of Anadolu Kültür Corporation, with regard to the investigation about July 15 coup attempt. Osman Kavala has been arrested through this investigation on February 19, 2020.

Osman Kavala is not released from prison since he has been arrested through another investigation for ‘political or military espionage’, on March 9, 2020.

(03/231) Non-Prosecution Decision for Police Officers in Hatay…

It is learned that Iskenderun Public Prosecutor’s Office ruled non-prosecution through the investigation on the charges of ‘injury’ and ‘insult’ against 3 police officers (A. Ç., N. C. and S. D.) who have committed physical violence against lawyer Nevzat Ercan and his client. 

  1. Y., who was detained in Iskenderun district of Hatay on August 27, 2019, on the grounds of escaping from a police control point, has been subjected to physical violence of the police. Lawyer Nevzat Ercan, who arrived to the scene and rejected the violence, has been also subjected to physical and verbal violence of the police.

(03/232) Trials in Alleged Link to Coup Attempt…

The final trial of the case against 11 people including former Kars Gendarmerie Commander Colonel Serdar Güngör, is held at Kars Heavy Penal Court No 2 on March 20, 2020. The court sentenced 6 defendants to jail penalties from 12 years and 6 months to 20 years. The court acquitted 5 defendants.

(03/234) Ban of Events in Urfa…

Urfa Governorate made a declaration on March 20, 2020 and announced that, all open events such as demonstrations, press declarations, meetings, sit-ins, opening stands and tents, delivering leaflets, hanging banners and so on are banned for 30 days as of March 20, 2020, until April 18, 2020. This extends the ban of events in Urfa to continually 182 days since October 20, 2019.

(03/235) Covid-19 Pandemic…

Ministry of Health declared that 5 people died due to Covid-19 pandemic and 311 new Covid-19 cases were diagnosed on March 20, 2020.

Ministry of Health declared that 12 people died due to Covid-19 pandemic and 277 new Covid-19 cases were diagnosed on March 21, 2020.

On March 21, 2020, Ministry of Interior announced a partial curfew for the citizens aged 65 and over and those who suffer from chronic illnesses and banned leaving home, walking in open areas such as parks, and travelling with public transportation for them; as a part of precautions for Covid-19 pandemic.

Ministry of Health declared that 9 people died due to Covid-19 pandemic and 289 new Covid-19 cases were diagnosed on March 22, 2020.

The death toll from Covid-19 in Turkey increased to 30 and total number of confirmed cases is 1236 as of March 22, 2020.

[1]The reports on the human rights violations of the Documentation Center are claims unless they are certified. The claim of violation either is certified through thoroughly investigations of HRFT Documentation Center, including by judicial verdicts, and becomes a definite data or it is not included to the annual report.

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[5] Daily Human Rights Reports are prepared on the information gathered by the Documentation Center from its own network and the following dailies and internet portals: Vatan, Milliyet, Hürriyet, Habertürk, Evrensel, Birgün, Cumhuriyet, Fırat Haber Ajansı, Jinnews, ETHA, Mezopotamya Ajansı, Yurt, Yeni Yaşam, NTV, Yeni Asya, Bianet, Halkinsesi.tv, Cnnturk, Tr724, İleri Haber, Siyasi Haber, Alınteri, Kızılbayrak, Sendika.org, Yüksekova Haber, T24, Diken, Gazete Karınca, Gazete Duvar. Haber Sol, El Cezire, BBC, Deutsche Welle, Reuters, AFP.