by Uzay Bulut for The Gatestone Institute – 23.12.22
Torture and abuse of citizens in Turkey is systematic and commonplace.
Kurds in Turkey are not only exposed to racism and discrimination; they are murdered simply for being Kurdish.
At the same time, those who call for an investigation on Turkey's alleged use of chemical weapons against members of the Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK) in Iraqi Kurdistan — journalists, lawyers, medical doctors, and members of parliament — have been detained by police and criminally investigated.
On November 4, lawyer Aryen Turan was detained and released on condition of judicial control, with a ban on leaving the country, after she called for an investigation about Turkey's alleged use of chemical weapons.
For Turkish government officials to accuse Europe of racism, discrimination or Islamophobia, while Turkish authorities victimize hundreds of thousands of their own citizens, is beyond hypocritical.
It is not in Europe that Turks, Kurds and other Muslims are exposed to torture, rights abuses and other illegal acts. It is the government of Turkey that is violating and abusing their own citizens for either thinking differently or belonging to an ethnic or religious group of which the government is not fond.
Torture and abuse of citizens in Turkey is systematic and commonplace. Kurds in Turkey are not only exposed to racism and discrimination; they are murdered simply for being Kurdish. Pictured: Riot police in Istanbul on October 26 clash with citizens who are protesting the arrest of Dr. Sebnem Korur Fincanci, President of the Union of Doctors of Turkey, for her statements about the country's alleged use of chemical weapons against Kurdish PKK rebels.
While the government of Turkey continues to crush the basic human rights and freedoms of its citizens, its officials are making statements completely detached from facts. On October 17, for instance, the head of Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee Çağatay Kılıç said that "racism and discrimination against religious identities in Europe have reached a peak."
"A human being is an entity with thoughts, feelings, beliefs and social networks," he added. "If a person is not allowed to live with these characteristics, this person's fundamental rights and freedoms are taken away from them."
It is actually Turkey that is silencing and even the destroying "thoughts, feelings, beliefs and social networks'" of those who disagree with the government, or who belong to a religion or ethnic group not considered sufficiently "Turkish." Torture and abuse of citizens is also systematic and commonplace.
Dr. Sebnem Korur Fincanci, the head of the Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (HRFT), was arrested for her statements about the country's alleged use of chemical weapons. The foundation issues daily reports about the human rights violations in the country, such as torture and ill-treatment. The reports are based on media disclosures as well as testimonies of individuals who seek help from the organization after being exposed to torture, mistreatment, or other human rights violations.
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