Widespread human rights abuses in Turkey revealed in 2022 report
A new report from the Human Rights Association (IHD) sheds light on the extent of human rights violations in Turkey during 2022. The report detailed violence, ill-treatment, arrests, and other forms of abuse.
According to the released report, the year witnessed the violation of security policies that hampered societal peace. A troubling number of 1,452 individuals faced violence and maltreatment during detention. The Dicle Firat Journalists Association (DFG) reported the arrest of 39 journalists in 2022.
IHD Secretary-General Hüseyin Balaban read the report at the conference, emphasizing Turkey's failure to uphold the international conventions it has ratified. "What's transpiring in the nation mirrors the disturbing events of the 90s," remarked Balaban, highlighting the abandonment of sick prisoners and the ongoing torture despite international and domestic laws prohibiting it.
A significant concern voiced by Balaban pertained to the Forensic Medicine Institution's role. The institution's physicians, he noted, are "entirely under the sway of political agendas," rendering the documentation of torture nearly impossible because of institutional bias.
Balaban also shed light on the grave suppression of freedoms in the nation. He stated, "Freedom of speech and association has never been more threatened. With rampant arrests for writings, speeches, and even tweets, there is a blatant breach of the European Convention on Human Rights, especially its articles 9 and 10."
The Kurdish issue remains unresolved, causing severe repercussions across several domains. "Rather than adopting a democratic approach, the state's strategies revolve around rejection, assimilation, and heightened security," said Balaban. He emphasized shifting war budgets toward improving education, health, and the economy.
During the refugee crisis, Balaban highlighted the challenging conditions refugees face. Turkey has put geographical limitations on the Refugee Rights Convention, and asylum seekers from Africa and the Middle East live in dire situations. Balaban complained about political entities and associations' discriminatory behavior towards these asylum seekers.
Balaban ended his address by commenting on the judiciary's apparent bias. "Political prisoners, unfortunately, serve much longer sentences than judicial ones," he said, pointing to the stark discrimination.
Some alarming figures from the IHD's 2022 report include:
Deaths in prisons: 81
Civilians killed due to mine explosions and unattended bombs: 286
Women killed in various incidents: 387
Children killed in different circumstances: 87
Torture outside detention: 2,947 individuals affected, including 42 children
Concerning Freedom of expression, 76 investigations were started in 2022: 2391 news agencies and websites faced bans in the same year.