2,694 people killed, 3,145 mistreated or tortured in Turkey in 2021: report

File photo.

An annual report on human rights violations in Turkey, drafted by main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker Sezgin Tanrıkulu, has revealed 2,694 deaths and 3,145 incidents of torture or maltreatment in 2021, with 925 of them taking place in prisons, the Bianet news website reported.

The report by Tanrıkulu, a prominent human rights activist and deputy chair of a parliamentary committee on human rights, said 2,170 workers were among those whose right to life was violated in 2021 in Turkey.

At least 324 women were also reportedly killed by men last year, most of them victims of domestic violence.

Turkey’s women’s rights associations have been trying for years to raise awareness about the spike in cases of domestic violence in the last decade, regarded by many to be linked to the policies and rhetoric of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government.

According to the report, a minor was among the 3,145 people who were subjected to mistreatment in Turkey last year, in addition to 925 incidents of torture or maltreatment taking place behind bars.

Regarding violations of freedom of speech, the MP’s annual report showed that 353 people were detained and 51 were convicted in 2021 for expressing views critical of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his AKP government.

The report also covered violations of press freedom, saying that 26 members of the press were attacked and 62 were arrested last year, while investigations were launched into 36 journalists.

Turkish police intervened in 334 demonstrations, public press statements and assemblies last year, detaining at least 3,723 people, including 12 minors. A total of 171 people were convicted in cases related to those activities.

The report further revealed that 200 political party and municipal chairs and members, the majority of them from the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), were arrested, while 124 officials were removed from office and replaced with government-appointed trustees in 2021.

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