Apr 12 2018

Speaker of parliament systematically glossing over torture incidents - CHP MP

The Speaker of the Turkish Grand National Assembly, İsmail Kahraman, has rejected written questions on allegations of torture in prisons, on the grounds that those questions were related to private life, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Barış Yarkadaş told Birgün newspaper on Thursday.

“The president of the Turkish parliament has taken to glossing over torture allegations as a duty,” said Yarkadaş. “With this answer, we saw that torture is evaluated as an issue related to people’s private lives. The government is providing shelter to torturers”.

Yarkadaş said that he submitted a written inquiry to the president including details of torture incidents taking place in prisons, but Kahraman rejected the application saying that his questions contained personal opinions and were related to private life.

He added that Kahraman had recently declined all motions related to torture and ill treatment. “His attitude has become systematic. He does not want any torture cases that take place under the rule of the Justice and Development Party to be recorded," said Yarkadaş.

In its World Report 2018, Human Rights Watch said that cases of torture and ill-treatment in police custody had been widely reported in Turkey in 2017, including reports of police beating detainees, subjecting them to prolonged stress positions and threats of rape, threats to lawyers, and interference with medical examinations.