Torture Witness: The witness, who used to be a schoolteacher in Cizre (in the Kurdish region), testified that he was abducted on 18 April 2015 by persons who said that they were policeman. The witness testified that these persons asked him questions about four of his students, of which they said one had joined the PKK and the others the Gülen movement. They allegedly asked him to sign a statement confirming this, under the threat of a gun and of reprisals for him and his family.
The witness further stated that on 20 April 2015, the police raided his house and took his wife into custody for four days. The witness declared that one month before the attempted coup d’État in 2016, he was arrested based on criminal charges relating to falsifications. Later, the charges were changed to membership of an armed organisation.
The witness testified that he was constantly moved from one prison to another (often by men in plain clothes), that he was subject to torture during a non-consecutive period of 24 days, that he was exposed to degrading prison conditions and that he was denied medical care (necessary due to the inflicted torture). The witness elaborated on the fact that he was denied access to his lawyer and that during the court hearings the policemen that tortured him were also present and threatened that if he told the court that he had been tortured, he would be tortured again. He was also forced to sign a statement recognising that he himself was responsible for not taking his medication and that he had rejected the assistance of his lawyer. The witness testified that he told the court about the torture, but that no action was taken.