TIHV: 781 people denounced torture and harassment in 2023

According to the report published by the TIHV, in 2023, 781 people applied to the foundation stating that they were tortured and ill-treated, and 6 people lost their lives during the detention process.

The Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (TIHV), which carries out studies on the prevention of torture and the treatment and rehabilitation of people who have been subjected to torture, published the "2023 Treatment and Rehabilitation Centers Report".

According to the report, in 2023, 781 people applied to the TIHV denouncing that they (739) or their relatives (42) were subjected to torture and ill-treatment. The number of applications made to TIHV due to torture in the last 10 years has reached 7,548, and the number of applications made since the foundation was established in 1990 has reached 21,894. According to the report, the youngest of those tortured was 7 years old.

Six people lost their lives

According to the report, at least 7 out of every 10 people who applied to TIHV last year were tortured and ill-treated in the last year, and at least 9 in the last 6 years. It was underlined that the death of 6 people who were subjected to torture and ill-treatment during detention in 2023 was "an important indicator of the prevalence and seriousness of torture practices."

One out of three people are women or LGBTI+

Of those who were subjected to torture, 240 identified themselves as women (32.8 percent), 428 as men (58.5 percent), and 63 as non-binary/queer. Looking at the distribution of applications made to Istanbul, Izmir and Ankara representative offices by months, it is seen that there was a significant increase in torture and harassment in the months of June and July due to the obstructions to Pride Week events.

The youngest person tortured was 7 and the oldest 77

The youngest of those who applied to the Foundation because they were tortured was 7 years old, and the oldest 77. Nearly half of the applicants (49.2 percent) were people aged between 19 and 35.

The report said that official detention was carried out in 598 (81.8 percent) of the applications made to TIHV for torture reasons. 133 applicants (18.8 percent) said that their last detention period was unrecorded and no official action was taken.

Most of applications made in Istanbul

In 2023, the most applications due to torture were made to the Foundation’s offices in Istanbul. 251 applications were made there, while 172 applications in Izmir, and 161 in Van. The number of applications made to TIHV Amed Representation reached 125, although it could not provide service for nearly 4 months due to the February 2023 earthquake. The number of applications made to Cizre and Ankara was 40 and 32, respectively.

The Istanbul Police Department ranked first among the places where detainees were subjected to torture, while Diyarbakır, Ankara and Van police departments followed.

Kurdish is mother tongue of 67 percent of those exposing torture

The report stated: "When the applications made to TIHV are evaluated together with the place of birth and mother language of the applicants, we can see that the Kurdish ethnic identity is exposed to torture more than other ethnic identities. 67 percent of the applications were made by people whose mother tongue is Kurdish."