21 April 2020 HRFT Documentation Center Daily Human Rights Report

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

21 April 2020 Daily Human Rights Report

(04/142) Suspicious Death in Prison…

Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Kocaeli MP Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu declared on April 20, 2020 on social media that, Serkan Onur Özdemir, a prisoner kept in Sincan Prison died there. It is learned that prison administration claims that Serkan Onur Özdemir hung himself with his belt, and it is also learned that the autopsy was done without informing his family.

(04/143) Torture and Ill-Treatment in Prison…

Nurhayat Altun, former co-mayor of Tunceli who is kept in Kocaeli Kandıra F Type Prison No 1, made a declaration via phone on April 20, 2020; and stated that after release of ordinary prisoners as per law enforcement bill, political prisoners were given only instant soup for 3 days.

HDP Kocaeli MP Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu declared on April 20, 2020 on social media that, Onur Demir, a prisoner in Denizli Prison was kept naked in a cold room for 2 hours with hands cuffed to his feet behind his back.

It is learned from the news coverage of April 20, 2020 that, precautions for Covid-19 and hygienic measures were not taken in Ankara Sincan Women’s Prison.

It is learned from the news coverage of April 20, 2020 that in Bitlis E Type Prison, despite o Covid-19 pandemic, there were 20 people kept in a ward for 10 prisoners; and prisoners were given only glass cleaner as cleaning and hygiene supplies.

(04/144) Assault to a Newspaper’s Office in Kocaeli…

On April 20, 2020, an anonymous armed assault was organized against Ses Kocaeli newspaper’s office. It is learned that there were no casualties but the office was physically damaged.

İsmet Çiğit, managing editor of the newspaper and writer Güngör Aslan were detained on March 22, 2020, for a news report on Covid-19 pandemic published online; and they were released after statement procedures.

(04/145) 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 1259 days to regain their jobs, in front of Human Rights Monument in Yüksel Street on April 20, 2020 at 13.30 and at 18.00, and forced people away from the monument by using physical violence.

(04/146) Police Intervention Against a Protest in Ankara…

The police intervened Mahmut Konuk having a protest in front of Çankaya Public Health Directorate on April 20, 2020, to regain his job from which he had been dismissed by state of emergency decrees, and forced him away from the building by using physical violence.

(04/147) Police Intervention Against a Union Protest in Istanbul…

The police intervened the press declaration of DISK/Limter-İş trade union about May 1 and to demand precautions for Covid-19 in dockyards in Tuzla district of Istanbul on April 20, 2020; and detained 6 people including union chair Kamber Saygılı. Detained people are released on the same day after being fined to 3,180 Turkish Liras each. Detained people are: Limter-İş union chair Kamber Saygılı, union organiser Deniz Bakır, Socialist Party of the Oppressed (ESP) provincial chair Hüseyin İldan, ESP provincial executive Çınar Altan, Aydın Kılıçdere and United Workers Council (BİG) member Murat Şaşmaz.

(04/148) Police Intervention Against a Protest in Van…

The police used pepper spray and rubber bullets to intervene the press declaration to protest Turkish Armed Forces’ air operation to Zînî Wertê in Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government, on April 20, 2020 in İpekyolu district of Van, and detained 5 people by using physical violence. Detained people’s names are unknown.

(04/149) Detained People in Diyarbakır…

4 people who were detained in house raids in Şenlik and Birlik rural neighbourhoods of Lice district of Diyarbakır during a military operation there on April 15, 2020, are arrested by the court on the charges of ‘being an illegal organisation member’ and ‘aiding an illegal organisation’. Arrested people are: Ferhat Önkol, Tuba Oyunlu, Dilan Oyunlu and Bager Oyunlu.

(04/150) Co-Mayor on Trial in Diyarbakır…

It is learned from the news coverage of April 20, 2020, that the trial of the case against Rojda Nazlıer, HDP co-mayor of Kocaköy district of Diyarbakır, is held at Diyarbakır Heavy Penal Court No 11 on April 2, 2020, without informing Rojda Nazlıer and her lawyers. It is learned that the court decided to continue detention of Rojda Nazlıer and adjourned the trial to June 22, 2020.

(04/151) Çorlu Train Crash Case…

The trial of the case against 4 officials of Turkish State Railways (TCDD) about the train crash on July 8, 2018, in Çorlu district of Tekirdağ where 25 people died and 328 people got wounded, which was to be held at Çorlu Heavy Penal Court No 1 on April 21, 2020, is adjourned one day before the trial due to Covid-19 pandemic, to June 25, 2020. 4 officials of TCDD on trial are: Turgut Kurt, railway maintenance manager at TCDD Regional Directorate No 1 Halkalı Railway Maintenance Directorate No 14; Özkan Polat, railway maintenance and repair chief at Çerkezköy Maintenance and Repair, Celaleddin Çabuk, line maintenance and repair official at Railway Maintenance Directorate and Çetin Yıldırım, chief in charge of bridges who has signed the annual inspection report issued on May 2018.

The indictment demands jail sentence from 2 years to 15 years for defendants on the charge of ‘reckless killing and injury’.

(04/152) Covid-19 Pandemic…

Ministry of Health declared that 123 people died due to Covid-19 pandemic and 4,674 new Covid-19 cases were diagnosed on April 20, 2020.

The death toll from Covid-19 in Turkey increased to 2,140 and total number of confirmed cases is 90,980 as of April 20, 2020.

It is declared by a presidential circular on April 20, 2020 that a 96-hour curfew as a part of precautions for Covid-19 pandemic will be imposed as of 00.00 on April 23, 2020 in 31 cities including 30 metropolitan cities, excepting individuals and institutions stated in the circular.

It is learned from the news coverage of April 20, 2020 that, 2 prisoners released from Hakkari Prison, as per the law on criminal enforcement that has been accepted by Grand National Assembly and entered into force as of April 14, 2020; who went to Yüksekova district of Hakkari have tested positive for Covid-19. It is reported 1 prisoner released from Mersin Prison also tested positive for Covid-19.

It is learned from data shared by Izmir Chamber of Medicine on April 20, 2020 that 357 health workers including 124 doctors, 108 nurses, delivery nurses and medical assistants, 55 health officers, 14 medical secretaries, 16 technicians, 28 public officers, 5 pharmacists, 2 psychologists, 3 security staff, 1 engineer and 1 driver, in Izmir tested positive for Covid-19.

[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,, Cnnturk, Tr724, İleri Haber, Siyasi Haber, Alınteri, Kızılbayrak,, Yüksekova Haber, T24, Diken, Gazete Karınca, Gazete Duvar. Haber Sol, El Cezire, BBC, Deutsche Welle, Reuters, AFP.