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Turkey Rights Monitor - Issue 169


Throughout the week, prosecutors ordered the detention of at least 63 people over alleged links to the Gülen movement. In October 2020, a UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) opinion said that widespread or systematic imprisonment of individuals with alleged links to the group may amount to crimes against humanity. Solidarity with OTHERS has compiled a detailed database to monitor the Gülen-linked mass detentions since a failed coup in July 2016.


No news has emerged of Yusuf Bilge Tunç, a former public sector worker who was sacked from his job by a decree-law during the 2016-2018 state of emergency and who was reported missing as of August 6, 2019, in what appears to be one of the latest cases in a string of suspected enforced disappearance of government critics since 2016.


September 11: The 17th Aykut Kence Evolution Conference (AKEK), which was to be organized by the Middle East Technical University (METU) Biology and Genetics Society (BİYOGEN) on December 6-7 this year, has been canceled.

September 11: The police intervened the screening of the movie Pardon organized by the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) Kocaeli Freedom Neighborhood House, 13 people were detained.

September 12: Izmir Governor's Office announced a ban on all events such as meetings, marches, press statements, opening stands/tents, distributing leaflets, hanging banners/posters, protests, picnics, festivals, festivals etc. under the name "We Speak Out Against LGBTI+ Phobic State Organs!".

September 13: Turkish police on Tuesday intervened in a demonstration in İzmir protesting the broadcast of an anti-LGBT public ad on TV stations, briefly detaining 10 participants.

September 14: The İstanbul Governor’s Office has refused to issue a permit to a group of civil society organizations that sought to hold a commemoration ceremony for Iranian woman Mahsa Amini on the first anniversary of her death.

September 14: On the 35th day of the resistance of FEDAŞ (Fırat Electricity Distribution Co.) workers in Dersim, the solidarity concert to be organized in Seyit Rıza Square was banned by the governorate on the grounds that it was "not deemed appropriate".

September 15: It was announced that the Kurtuluş Street Festival, which has been organized for the past two years, will not be held this year due to a "negative response" from the Beyoğlu Municipality.


September 12: Rize Criminal Judicature of Peace ordered the deletion of 3 news articles about an academic who had a harassment complaint against him.

September 13: It was reported that 3 news reports about a person named Burak Başlar were ruled to be deleted.

September 13: A Turkish prosecutor has filed a summary of proceedings for an opposition lawmaker, Sezgin Tanrıkulu, that may cause him to lose his parliamentary immunity, accusing him of insulting the Turkish military in remarks critical of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK).

September 13: Şener Levent, the editor-in-chief of the daily newspaper Avrupa in Cyprus, was sentenced to 11 months and 20 days in prison in Turkey for insulting the Turkish President for his article titled "Kurds and us".

September 13: Eight of the 10 people detained at İdil Cultural Center, where Grup Yorum was conducting its activities, were released, while Sevda Kurban and Merve Kurt were arrested.

September 14: A Kurdish journalist, Abdurrahman Gök, who has been the subject of frequent judicial harassment since he photographed the killing of a Kurdish university student by a police officer in 2017 has not been released from prison after five months in pretrial detention.

September 14: A Turkish court has handed down a suspended 15-month sentence to a Kurdish journalist, Rojin Altay, on charges of disseminating terrorist propaganda in her social media posts.

September 14: Turkey’s main opposition leader, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, will stand trial on charges of “insulting a public officer” due to his statements about a former minister, Erdoğan Bayraktar, implicated in the Dec. 17, 2013 corruption investigation.

September 16: İlknur Bilir, a journalist living in Germany, was detained at Sabiha Gökçen Airport due to her social media posts during the earthquake.


September 14: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has once again targeted an opposition lawmaker, Sezgin Tanrıkulu, who recently criticized the Turkish military for its alleged involvement in controversial actions, calling him a “so-called lawmaker and the worst kind of terrorist.”


September 13: Former HDP MP Hüda Kaya was sentenced to pay compensation for 'attacking SADAT's personal rights' due to a parliamentary question.

September 15: Y.B., a municipality employee who attacked Bitlis Journalists' Association President Sinan Aygül on June 17 following news about corruption and irregularities in Tatvan Municipality, and police officer E.K. who prevented bystanders from intervening were released.


September 12: A Diyarbakır court has sentenced Narin Gezgör, a founding member of the Rosa Women’s Association, a Kurdish women’s rights group, to seven years, six months in prison on terrorism-related charges.

September 14: Afyon Prison refused to give writer Rizgar Turhan, who has been imprisoned since 1995, the books "Cangoriyên Mişarê" and "Dilopek Ji Ava Jînê", which he wrote in prison.


September 15: It was reported that in Istanbul Marmara (Silivri) L Type Prison No 9, the water flowing from the taps in the wards is muddy, and the food given to prisoners is low and of poor quality.


September 14: Border guards from Turkey and Greece on Thursday fired on a group of 11 asylum seekers fleeing a political crackdown by the Turkish government.


September 13: Prisoners in Sincan Women's Closed Prison, including imprisoned journalist Dicle Müftüoğlu, were forced to be examined in handcuffs at the hospital.

September 13: It was reported that a prisoner named H. B. A. in Diyarbakır Prison was subjected to physical violence by the wardens and was wounded in various parts of his body.


September 17: Koray Vural, a businessman who has been working as a teacher and administrator in schools close to the congregation in Tajikistan and has been engaged in trade for a long time, was kidnapped by unidentified persons in the capital Dushanbe yesterday. It was claimed that Vural was kidnapped by MIT and would be taken to Turkey.


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