Turkish prosecutor dismisses charges against the police, accuses the victim
A Turkish prosecutor dismissed charges against two police officers who violently detained a journalist during Istanbul Pride march in 2021. The prosecutor subsequently indicted the journalist on allegations of "resisting" and "insulting" the police, according to a report by the Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA).
Several police officers had forced Agence France-Presse (AFP) reporter Bulent Kilic to the ground and pressed on his neck at the Pride march in Istanbul in June 2021, before taking him into custody.
In August 2021, criminal charges were filed against two police officers who were identified as having been involved in the incident, on allegations of misconduct and inflicting injury.
Almost two years later, prosecutor Aysel Daskiran decided to dismiss the charges on grounds that the accused police officers did not commit the offense of misusing their authority. She also said that there was no indisputable evidence to show that the police officers flung Kilic's camera with the intention of smashing it, therefore they could neither be accused of "damage to property."
The prosecutor subsequently filed a lawsuit against Kilic, accusing the journalist of "resisting public officers to prevent them from carrying out their duty," and "insulting public officials."
She claimed that Kilic "tried to hit the police officers with his camera" and "insulted them repeatedly."
The prosecutor disregarded an earlier ruling by an Istanbul court who said that the police officers used excessive force in the incident and who decided that Kilic should be paid 30,000 TL (approx. $1,600) in compensation.