Wednesday, October 2, 2013

News the HP Doesn't Cover: AI Accuses Turkey of Human Rights Violations

You would expect the human rights loving Huffington Post editors and its readership would be extremely interested in this story, but so far no sign of it:

Turkish authorities committed widespread human rights violations during the government’s crackdown on the Gezi Park protests earlier this year, according to an Amnesty International report released Wednesday.
“The attempt to smash the Gezi Park protest movement involved a string of human rights violations on a huge scale,” Amnesty International’s expert on Turkey, Andrew Gardner, said. ”They include the wholesale denial of the right to peaceful assembly and violations of the rights to life, liberty and the freedom from torture and ill-treatment.”
Protests broke out at Gezi Park in June over government plans to redevelop Istanbul landmark Taksim Square and build a replica Ottoman-era military barracks at Gezi, one of the last green areas in the city. The public rallies then evolved into an outpouring of discontent with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government, which many have accused of becoming authoritarian, and spread to other cities in Turkey.
At least three deaths were linked to the use of excessive force by police, and more than 8,000 people were injured at protests where police used live ammunition, tear gas, water cannons, plastic bullets and physical force in their attempts to disperse the crowds, according to the report, which was titled “Gezi Park protests: Brutal denial of the right to peaceful assembly in Turkey.”
Turkish journalist Gökhan Biçici said he feared for his life when police allegedly detained him on the street and in police buses for six hours before taking him into official custody June 16. Video evidence (seen above) has shown him being beaten and dragged through the street by Turkish riot police.

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