Brutal assault on Diyarbakir inmate ignites calls for urgent investigation

Brutal assault on Diyarbakir inmate ignites calls for urgent investigation
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An inmate in a Turkish prison reported a brutal beating by guards, sparking outrage and prompting urgent calls for an investigation into prison conditions and inmate treatment

An inmate in a prison in Turkey's southeastern Diyarbakir province recounted a brutal attack he experienced at the hands of over 20 prison guards, sparking outrage and calls for an urgent investigation into the matter, Artı Gercek’s Remzi Budancir reported on Wednesday.

The distressing assault on the inmate, identified as H.B.A, took place on the evening of September 3 around 8.00 PM. According to H.B.A, the assault began with another inmate being taken out of his cell and beaten by the guards. When H.B.A raised concerns, he was dragged out and suffered a similar, merciless beating without any explanation.

But the horrifying incident did not end there. H.B.A described his face being covered in blood and significant swelling in his head as a result of the attack. Subsequent to the assault, he was threatened by the guards with disciplinary action and delay in his release if he chose to file a complaint. Despite this, seeing the severity of H.B.A's condition, the prison doctor immediately transferred him to a hospital.

During his examination at the hospital, H.B.A recounted further intimidation by one of the guards, who entered the facility accompanied by soldiers, aiming to prevent him from obtaining a medical report that documented the physical assault. The guard's attempts were thwarted by the firm objection of the attending doctor and soldiers, allowing H.B.A to receive the necessary medical examination and a report on the assault.

In an interview with Artı Gercek, Attorney Şeyhmus Bayhan confirmed the beating incident. Bayhan visited the prison on Wednesday after receiving a distress call from H.B.A urging for a meeting with his lawyer. “H.B.A's family was not aware of the situation. He had only requested for the lawyer to visit, so I went to the prison. During our meeting, I observed swelling on the left side of his face and injuries on his head. He narrated the entire ordeal in detail,” Bayhan reported.

Following his conversation with his client, Bayhan sought to discuss the matter with the prison director. “Someone claiming to be the deputy director came to meet me. We had a conversation, but I am not certain about his identity. I inquired about the initiation of any investigation concerning the abuse and torture. He stated that no actions had been taken yet. When I asked about the existence of CCTV footage, he confirmed they were available. I informed him that I would be reporting the incident to the relevant authorities and the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor's office, before leaving the prison,” Bayhan elaborated.

Bayhan confirmed that he had filed a complaint with the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor's office regarding the assault and ill-treatment directed towards his client. He said, "We have requested the acquisition of CCTV footage and identification of the suspects." The attorney remains determined to bring the culprits to justice, ensuring a comprehensive investigation is underway. This appalling incident sheds light on the concerning state of prisoner welfare and raises pressing questions about the safety and humane treatment of inmates in the facility.