Jailed Kurdish children speak of torture by Turkish security forces in Nusaybin

The torture claims have marked the trial of 17 Kurdish children, who were arrested by Turkish security forces in Mardin’s Nusaybin district during the clashes between the extensions of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Turkish security forces in 2016.

According to report by pro-Kurdish Fırat news agency (ANF), the trial of 67 people, including 17 Kurdish children who were arrested by Turkish security forces in Nusaybin during the clashes in 2016, was done at Mardin 4th High Criminal Court on Friday.

Eight of the jailed children were brought to courtroom while nine jailed children were forced to attend the trial via closed-circuit camera system (SEGBİS). Seven of the children refused to give their statements via SEGBİS.

According to report, one of the children, H.A., said during his testimony before the court that they had to stay in the basements during clashes and were captured by Turkish security forces after they left the conflict zone. H.A. spoke about the torture in custody and claimed that he was forced to sign a statement written by the security forces.

Another imprisoned child, H.E. said that “We, 25 children who were hiding at the basement surrendered. After we declared that we will surrender, the security forces who came to pick us made a video recording. They said that they would take us to our families but took us to another place instead. Soldiers who were lined eight by eight tortured us. They broke a stick on my back”.

Speaking at the courtroom N.A. told the judges about the torture and verbal abuse and said that they gave their statement to the prosecutor under pressure. “When I told the prosecutor that I had been tortured, he told me: ‘Pray that you are not dead,’” claimed N.A. .

N.A. told of the torture right after their capture and said that “When cameras were on or there were health workers around they were behaving good to us, saying that they are trying to help us. But when the cameras were turned off they continued to torture us. They took me to another room. There were screams coming from the other part of the building. Two or three people attacked me in that room. They attempted to rape me.”

Another Kurdish child, D.A., also claimed that he had been sexually abused during the detention and rejected the accusations towards him.

Other children told of the same story and said that they were denied treatment by Turkish security forces.

ANF reported that the judges denied the statements by the children and their lawyers and decided for the continuation of detention for all of the children. The hearing was adjourned to April 10, 2018.

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