Sedef, who cannot go abroad for treatment due to a restraint on her passport, is stuck in Georgia with her mother who has difficult times during her pregnancy; her father is also stuck in Poland.
BOLD – The state of emergency has broken down many families with the detained mothers and fathers in separate prisons, and also with family members who were stuck in separate countries. What The Alas family, who has a daughter of cerebral palsy, has been through is among the most difficult sufferings that these families have experienced.
Doctor’s appointments which had been arranged in Sweden and Singapore for the treatment of Sedef Alas did not happen because of the restraint on 6-year-old Sedef‘s passport.
The family had to fall apart. Sedef Alas and her geography teacher Elife Alas are stuck in a very difficult life in Georgia. Turkish teacher father Samet Alas is in Poland.
The family, who had to seek asylum in two different countries, cannot get together because of the different asylum laws of Poland and Georgia. The father Samet Alas who seeks for the reunion of the family according to United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities describes their difficulties:
“My wife and I both were working in the Gulen Movement’s teaching intuitions. When we were unemployed, we moved from Maraş to Ankara in order to help my daughter with cerebral palsy to find treatment and maybe a new job. Indeed, I found a job in a company. During the state of emergency, the police came to my house when I was not at home for reasons such as depositing money into Bank Asya and being a member of a foundation. I learnt that I had a detention order against me. Then I had to run and live as a fugitive until the end of 2018.
One of my friends kidnapped by the police with a white Toyota, similar to the Black Transporter incidents. After a while, they released him. I decided to go abroad on the possibility of something similar that could happen to me. At the beginning of 2019, I illegally slipped over the border to Greece. Then I went to Poland. My goal was to go to Germany, but I was detained at the airport and spent two months in a refugee camp. Now I’m waiting for the finalization of my asylum seeking process in Poland”
“MY WIFE IS SICK AND MY DAUGHTER IS DISABLED MOREOVER THEY ARE ALONE”
In this process, doctor’s appointments were arranged for the treatment of Sedef in Sweden and Singapore, but this treatment was not possible due to the restraint of 6-year-old Sedef’s passport based on the State Decree-Law.
Samet Aras decided to take them abroad because he was afraid of the fact that legal processes had started about his wife and his disabled daughter Sedef could be left alone. The only country that could be visited was Georgia with a national ID. He made his wife and daughter gone to Georgia:
“My wife is going through a difficult pregnancy period. Because of the likelihood of problems similar to the first child, habitually doctors asked her to stay in the hospital until delivery. However, because she couldn’t leave our disabled daughter alone, she had to return home.
There are some families around, but they have to stay alone at home at night. My daughter can’t even go to the toilet on her own. My wife has to go to bed all the time because of heavy pregnancy. They’re having a hard time. The second child will be born, but we could not convince anyone from the relatives to go there and help. We’re desperate right now.”
“SEDEF COULD NOT WALK AGAİN”
Samet Alas says that: while in Turkey, her daughter started walking with regular physical therapy however Sedef has started to lose her ability to walk again due to the interruption of physical therapy in Georgia:
“My daughter has cerebral palsy. she should receive 3 or 4 sessions of physical therapy and one day of individual training per week. When she does not receive physical therapy, she loses her ability to walk and starts to fall, unfortunately, she begins to fall again right now. She was good in the last year, and she had started to walk inside the house. Sometimes she has a nervous breakdown. Because of her longing for father and having to stay at home constantly. My wife is pregnant and she can’t carry her out. There is an apparatus in the child’s foot. Because she grows, it must be changed every 6 months. But since we couldn’t change it, she had wounds on her feet. They do not meet the requirements in Georgia. She can’t even meet her own toilet needs.”
“I MUST BE REUNITED WITH MY FAMILY”
Samet Alas said that the regression and difficulties experienced by her daughter fell under the scope of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. He said that within the framework of this agreement, Sedef should be taken to a country where treatment can be made.
He also stated that he should be with them for the care of his pregnant wife and disabled daughter and he wants the family reunification process to be completed as soon as possible.
Alas, who applied to the authorities for this, says that: “the procedures take too much time, but there is no time, especially for my daughter, who began to lose her ability to walk.”
“Polish asylum laws and Georgian asylum laws are very strict to transcend. However, due to the special situation of my family, my daughter’s disability, and my wife’s heavy pregnancy, our family reunion needs to be addressed in a special context.”
Victims reveal details of severe torture under police custody
Seda Şaraldı, a lawyer from People’s Law Office, said systematic tortures have been taking place in Gazi Police Station, and recently some ill-treatment methods have been applied in an attempt to disable victims. One of the victims, Vedat Dogan, told about how they cracked his back and how this incident was covered up by police in the hospital and prosecution office.
Deniz Aydın, a female victim among the three, detailed in the video ill-treatments she suffered as following:
“They intercepted us on our way with their big white vehicle and pushed us inside without saying a word. They started hitting us and handcuffed our hands behind the back. They were trying to injure our arms.
“When we arrived at the police station, they said: “if you do not get off, we will break your bones.” We did not get off the vehicle since we did not know what was going on. So, they dragged us up to the third floor. There was a sort of room on the third floor of Gazi police station, with a steel door and a bell on it. They hurled us to the ground and started beating us.
“There were about 15-20 people in the room. We couldn’t see their faces; we were not allowed to look up. When we attempted to turn our face to look, they were kicking us.
“Systematic torture began later on; however, no one had any idea why we were there. A torture-tolerating policy has been put in place in Gazi; they have been seeking to bring back the 80’s and 90’s tortures to silence people.
“They continued beating with batons. They were hitting on our calves while telling each other that the calves are the most hurting parts. They were enjoying it when doing this. It was unbelievable that a person could find pleasure in doing such things.
“We stayed there for four hours, and they carried on by employing different torture methods. The one who was hitting with baton said: ‘I was not able to work out today, I did my exercise on you.’ He got tired and left, but another one replaced him. He sat on my back and bang on my kidneys. They have developed a method that aims at kidneys. The pains on kidneys were not like muscle pains, your internal organs feel the pain, and it was unbearable pain. There were also swearwords and insults, of course.
“They were hitting on my spine with the baton apeak, intending to break our back and leave us paralyzed. They were saying to each other something like, ‘This part is the one that hurts more.’
“Female police were supposed to search our bodies, but there was no female police officer. A male officer did body searches, and then, they brought a female officer to sign the documents.
“Meanwhile, they were trying to sow discord among us by referring to some names and talking about what they did.
“They did not let us stand. They were loudly calling us terrorist in the hospital. They were running down us, whereas we had not yet known the reason of our detention. They said afterward, ‘The era of white (Renault) Toros ended, but now it is the time of white vans’ in the hospital. It is obvious what white Toros did in Turkey, and they have spoken out that they will bring back them.”
Vedat Dogan who was kidnapped on 15 November said his back was cracked due to tortures and he has been wearing a steel corset for moths:
“I was also abducted in a white van on 15 November. They forced me to the ground by hitting me on the back and handcuffed me behind the back. They lowered my head and pressed against my back while my hands were tied behind the back, and they cracked my back. They did not stop despite knowing that my back would break. They punched me in the face. They also tortured my two friends alongside me.
“They threw us into a room, and about ten police officers in plainclothes beaten us there. They were trying to hurt me by squeezing my body’s vulnerable parts even though I told them my back got hurt. One of them was trying to insert his shoes in my mouth. They threatened to put out their cigarettes in my eyes and said, ‘We are the king of Gazi. This is just a trailer; we will shoot a movie with you.’ They also said if I ever come to Gazi again, they would shoot me.
“Police allow gangs and drugs to circulate freely in Gazi, whereas we have been fighting against them. Police have been trying to intimidate us from engaging in a fight against them.
“When they took me to the hospital, they talked to the doctor before he examined me. The doctor did not even check my back on x-ray even I told him my back injured. I told the prosecutor about the tortures I was subjected to. Still, the prosecutor kept asking me if I was a member of a terrorist organization and ignored my torture claims.
“I lived those things three months ago. They sought to cripple me. There is still a steel corset on my back. They arrested and tortured some of my friends after me. Their purpose is to intimidate us.
The other torture victim, Taylan Gütekin, said his torture started in Gazi polis station, but it continued in Istanbul’s Vatan Police Headquarter:
“They started torturing me soon after they detained me. Kicking, punching, hitting with a baton, attempting to break my bones. They applied kidney-squeezing torture to me. It was something aiming at internal organs. They seemed to get special education for it. They then took us to Vatan Police Headquarter and continued tortures there.”
The information of those who took refuge in Georgia leaked to Turkey
General Directorate of Security asked a study by the intelligence, sending the name list – inscribed as ‘Confidential’ – of 52 Turkish citizens who sought asylum in Georgia to 24 cities.
BOLD EXCLUSIVE – Ministry of Interior General Directorate of Security wrote to the Anti-Terror Branches of 24 provinces, reporting that 52 Turkish citizens sought asylum in Georgia. He asked for intelligence work on these people.
In the letter dated April 10, 2019 with the inscription ‘confidential’, it was stated that these people were related to the Hizmet Movement. It is not known how the names of people under international protection and whose lists of names should only be in the United Nations and Georgian authorities reached the Ministry of Interior.
However, the letter of the General Directorate of Security says the information was received from the counsellor of the Georgia Ministry of Interior.
In the letter, it is stated that according to the information received, these 52 people have carried on with their organizational activities after their asylum in Georgia, and the presence of a list including the names is mentioned.
It is said in the letter, “The list including the information of the PYD/FETO related people who sought asylum in Georgia and continued their organizational activities in Batumi, was taken from our Interior Counselor and sent for evaluation in the studies. ”
The official letter, signed by the head of Anti-Terrorism Department, Erdoğan Kartal, states that the names of the 52 people were added as “EXTENSION” to the name list.
REQUEST TO SEND INFORMATION TO INTERPOL DIVISION
The letter sent to the 24 cities – where the 52 people mentioned in the name list lived, while in Turkey – asked the intelligence information to be sent to the Interpol-Europol Office of the Presidency. Requesting the dispatch of the information to the Interpol Office is interpreted as a sign that a step can be taken for 52 asylum seekers in Georgia.
82 PEOPLE WERE BROUGHT FROM ABROAD TO TURKEY
After July 15, hundreds of people associated with the Hizmet Movement were asked to be handed over to Turkey. Some of them were brought to Turkey by illegal abductions. A large number of people from countries such as Pakistan, Malaysia, Azerbaijan, Moldova and Kosovo were handed over to the National Intelligence Agency, illegally. Some of them were people who had applied to the United Nations for asylum.
Ismet Ozcelik and Turgay Karaman were two educators who were detained – unrecorded – in 2017 in Malaysia and handed over to Turkey . His lawyers appealed to the United Nations for forced abduction. Stating that Özçelik and Karaman’s freedoms had been violated, the United Nations Human Rights Commission called for the immediate release of two of them and gave the Turkish authorities 180 days to comply with the decision. In addition, the UN Commission ruled that compensation should be paid to individuals for arbitrary detention.
However, Turkey did not yet comply with the UN’s decision.
Canan teacher committed suicide after her return from visiting her prisoner husband
Teacher Canan Deniz who was jobless due to KHK (decree-law) locked herself in her room and committed suicide after her return from visiting her prisoner husband, who was a teacher too. Her two children are now parentless. Her detained husband was brought to the funeral of Canan Teacher, who was buried today, while he was accompanied by police and soldiers as he was handcuffed.
BOLD – Canan Deniz was a primary school teacher for 15 years. She was jobless because she was working in one of the closed many Gulen schools in Turkey due to decree-law (KHK) passed during the state of emergency. She was also unable to teach in another school because of her rights restricted by the Decree Law. The Deniz family had to settle in their hometown Denizli after the economic difficulties they had and they moved to the flat as a downstairs neighbor of Canan teacher’s family.
Judicial processes were added to economic problems too. In June 2018, her husband, Yılmaz Deniz, who was also a teacher in Gulen schools, had a car accident. He was detained by the police who came for the accident after being told that he was wanted, and then he was arrested. At the end of a fast trial process, Yılmaz Deniz was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months and sent to Denizli Prison.
Canan Deniz, who was alone with her teenage son and daughter, started to use heavy depression medications. She was hospitalized several times because of persistent pains, obsession with cleanliness and psychological problems.
Canan teacher, who was looking for a job to heal her psychology, could not find a job because she was jobless because of decree-law (KHK).
COMMITTED SUICIDE AFTER HER RETURN FROM PRISON
Canan Deniz returned home after visiting her detained husband Yılmaz Deniz with her children in Denizli Prison yesterday (17 June 2019).
Canan teacher, who went to her room, committed suicide by hanging herself with a kerchief. When the neighbors saw through the window in the evening, the children and her mother who lives upstairs wanted to be part of an effort to save her.
Medical teams from the scene found that Canan Deniz lost her life.
HER SON ENTERED THE UNIVERSITY ENTRANCE EXAM AT THE WEEKEND
Canan Deniz’s son entered the university entrance exam last weekend and she had a daughter studying in the first year of high school. It is expressed that both of her children had psychologically troubled in the current climate.
SHE WAS A VERY IDEALIST TEACHER
Her colleague, who has known Canan Deniz for years, said the following:
“Sister Canan was a very idealistic teacher. So I aspired to be like her, then I became a teacher. She certainly wasn’t a suicidal person. She was a successful teacher, well-liked by student parents. What she had been through, loneliness and illnesses probably triggered suicide. Her children also had psychological problems that affected her. She was alone in this painful process. She couldn’t talk to anyone. These all affected her.”
IN OUR LAST MEETING SHE ASKED, “SHOULD I PAY ZAKAT FOR MY MONEY IN THE BANK?”
Another colleague of Canan Deniz told about her last meeting:
“After graduating from high school, Canan teacher worked in a supermarket. Tired of the humiliating attitudes she faced during that time, she won the university with her own means. She became a teacher. She was a very idealistic teacher. Canan teacher had obsessive cleaning disease. What she had been through worsened this disease, but she also had severe pain in her body. Recently, she was hospitalized, after discharged from hospital ‘I don’t feel recovered’ she said. We worked together in the same school, and we were only able to talk on the phone in the last three years. When she sold her family’s car, there was some money and she put that money in a bank. Last week, she asked ‘if she could pay any zakat for that money?’ on our last talk. Psychologically she was very lonely. There was no one around to have a heart-to-heart talk, so we were inadequate on the phone. Her 62 years old mother was working in textiles. Canan teacher was very upset that she was inadequate for her family and inadequate for her children because of her health problems. She was a very idealistic teacher, not a suicidal person.”