Turkish soldier on compulsory military service in the Marmara province of Bursa died on November 29, 2017, 54 days after being beaten with a helmet by his senior.
According to a report by pro-government Hurriyet daily news, Gökhan Kılıç was caught by his senior, noncommissioned officer Osman Hancı, talking with his mother on his mobile phone on Oct. 7. Soldiers are not allowed to use their personal mobile phones in military barracks across Turkey during their military service.
The only witness of the incident, soldier Ahmet Kızılcan, said he only heard Kılıç say “ouch” when he went to a well to wash his hand. “When I returned from the well, I saw Kılıç lying on the ground and Hancı with a helmet in his hand,” he said in his testimony.
Kızılcan added that Kılıç started to say he had a headache after the incident. “At night, he felt worse. He couldn’t even talk. A friend of ours put Kılıç’s head on his lap while we were trying to calm him down. Just then, another senior soldier came in and ordered us to call an ambulance,” he said
Kılıç died of apoplexy 54 days after being in a coma in the Bursa State Hospital. On the same day, Hancı was arrested for “deliberate fatal injuring.” In his testimony, Hancı said he did not beat Kılıç with his helmet but just rubbed the helmet on his head. Hancı allegedly beat two soldiers with a stick a couple of months ago.
The father of the killed soldier, Halis Kılıç, said the military did not recognize his son as a martyr because he was not killed in a clash.
His mother, Berna Kılıç, said the perpetrator should be given the heaviest penalty. “Nothing can ease my pain. Gökhan had told me this man beat up some soldiers before. This incident is not his first. He should be given the heaviest penalty,” she said.