Torture and Ill-Treatment still reign in Turkey


TURKEY – Torture and ill-treatment still prevail in Turkey, despite the government’s declaration of  ‘zero tolerance’ for torture, almost six years ago.

 In a report of Human Right Association (IHD) and Human Right Foundation of Turkey (HRFT), the situation seems to get much worst than previous years in reference to Torture and inhuman treatment.

The Human Rights Organizations, whose experts carry out periodic reviews published a Comparative Summary Table between 1999-2009 where the data provided by the HR organizations gives a shocking picture.

Turkey - Comparative Report for Torture and Ill-Treatment 1999-2009

 According to the Report:

In 2009, unfortunately there was a rise in torture, ill-treatment, degrading and inhuman attitudes and punishment and claims of violation of these rights. September 12 regime and subsequent atmosphere of armed conflict have created impunity policy; afterwards, this policy has become a culture. It should be stated that if we do not struggle against impunity culture, we cannot hope that there would be decrease in claims of torture and ill-treatments. Unfortunately, the motto of government, “zero tolerance to torture” was not actualized and it could not fight against torture efficiently. According to Ministry of Justice, in 2008, 153 cases were opened on charges of torture and ill-treatment, and 403 people were tried as suspected. On the other hand, in 2008, 11256 cases were opened under the TCK 265, resistance to security forces, and 18859 people were tried in these cases. The data shows that in 2008, 76, 9 cases of resistance to security force were opened for each torture and ill-treatment case. Hence, numbers demonstrate that the impunity culture is going on.


Despite the legal protections against torture, which is part of its EU membership bid, data shows that the Turkish government is  not only failing to take crucial steps to eradicate torture, but it is proved that  a climate in which torture and other ill-treatment can flourish still prevails in Turkey. Recently an investigation by the human rights commission of the Turkish Grand National Assembly found that only two percent of the 2,140  police officials in Constantinople who are subjected to administrative investigations for carrying out torture and maltreatment between the years 2003 and 2008 received punishment.

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