Crime in Turkey

Crime in Turkey is combated by the Turkish police and other agencies. Since the 1990s, overall crime in Turkey has been rising. As of 2014, Turkey has seen a 400% rise in drug-related crimes, theft and homicide. In 1994, the number of arrested prisoners was recorded as 38,931; 20 years later, as of the beginning of October 2014, the number of prisoners has reached 152,335. According to the data provided by the Ministry of Justice, the crime rate is growing with each passing day.[1]

Crime by type


According to a study, some commonly-expressed views on rape were given to individuals from various professions, who were asked to agree or disagree; results recorded that 33% of the police officers agreed that "some women deserve rape", 66% of police officers, as well as nearly 50% of other professional groups except the psychologists about 18% and 27% of psychiatrists, suggested that "the physical appearance and behaviors of women tempt men to rape."[2]

In 2015, Turkish university student Özgecan Aslan was murdered as she resisted a rape attempt[3] on a minibus in Mersin. Her burnt body was discovered on 13 February. The murder was committed by Turkish minibus driver Ahmet Suphi Altındöken, his father Necmettin Altındöken and his friend Fatih Gökçe.[4] According to Turkish Daily Sabah, Özgcan Aslan became a symbol for Turkish women who are the victims of violence.[5]

In 2013, The Guardian reported that 'the rape and torture of Kurdish prisoners in Turkey are disturbingly commonplace'. According to a report from Amnesty International in 2003, Hamdiye Aslan, who accused of supporting the Kurdish separatist group had been detained in Mardin Prison, south-east Turkey, for almost three months in which she was reportedly blindfolded, anally raped with a truncheon, threatened and mocked by officers.[6]

Honour killing

Further information: Women in Turkey

A June 2008 report by the Turkish Prime Ministry's Human Rights Directorate said that in Istanbul alone there was one honor killing every week, and reported over 1,000 during the previous five years. It added that metropolitan cities were the location of many of these, due to growing immigration to these cities from the East.[7]

In 2009 a Turkish news agency reported that a 2-day-old boy who was born out of wedlock had been killed for honor. The maternal grandmother of the infant, along with six other persons, including a doctor who had reportedly accepted a bribe to not report the birth, were arrested. The grandmother is suspected of fatally suffocating the infant. The child's mother, 25, was also arrested; she stated that her family had made the decision to kill the child.[8]

In 2010 a 16-year-old Kurdish girl was buried alive by relatives for befriending boys in Southeast Turkey; her corpse was found 40 days after she went missing.[9] Ahmet Yildiz, 26, a Turkish-Kurdish physics student who represented his country at an international gay conference in the United States in 2008, was shot dead leaving a cafe in Istanbul. It is believed Yildiz was the victim of the country's first gay honor killing.[10][11]

In Turkey, persons found guilty of this crime are sentenced to life in prison.[12] There are well documented cases, where Turkish courts have sentenced whole families to life imprisonment for an honor killing. The most recent was on January 13, 2009, where a Turkish Court sentenced five members of the same Kurdish family to life imprisonment for the honor killing of Naile Erdas, 16, who got pregnant as a result of rape.[13]

Gang activity

Over the last ten years, 24391 people have been detained by the police and of those 8602 arrested in 3012 operations against gangs. The gendermarie has likewise detained 10437 people, arrested 6269 in 771 operations. Approximately a third of these arrests took place in 2005-7.[14]

Violence by authorities


Since the 1980s this issue has been the subject of studies by Amnesty International,[15][16] Human Rights Watch and the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture, who in 2004 reported "The legislative and regulatory framework necessary to combat effectively torture and other forms of ill-treatment by law enforcement officials has been put in place; the challenge now is to make sure that all of the provisions concerned are given full effect in practice." [17] and Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan has declared that there will be "zero tolerance" of torture in Turkey.

Deaths in custody

There have been a number of rulings against Turkey in the European Court of Human Rights resulting from deaths in custody in the 1990s,[18] a period when this was raised as an issue by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and others.[19][20]

In an August 2007 incident, Nigerian footballer Festus Okey was shot by the police while being detained in Beyoğlu police station. According to the police he had tried to wrestle the gun from the officer and was shot in the ensuing struggle. The Interior Minister Beşir Atalay refused to make a statement, saying "Questions are asked everywhere, they don't all get a reply".[21]

See also


  1. "Turkish crime rate increases 400 percent in 20 years". Sundays Zaman. October 20, 2014.
  2. "Turkish university students' attitudes toward rape. | HighBeam Business: Arrive Prepared". 2003-12-01. Retrieved 2013-12-03.
  3. "Brutal slaying leads to protests over violence against women in Turkey". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 15 February 2015.
  4. "Türkiye'yi sarsan Özgecan Aslan davasında karar: 3 sanığa da ağırlaştırılmış müebbet". Hurriyet. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  5. "Convicted killer of Özgecan Aslan shot dead in prison". DailySabah. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
  6. Meral Duzgun. "Turkey: a history of sexual violence | Global Development Professionals Network | Guardian Professional". Retrieved 2013-12-03.
  7. "Honor killings claim 1,000 lives in five years". Turkish Daily News. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
  8. (Fr) Le Monde (France), Un bébé de 2 jours victime d'un "crime d'honneur" en Turquie. LEMONDE.FR with Reuters. April 16, 2010. Accessed 2010-04-17.
  9. "Girl buried alive in honour killing in Turkey: Report". AFP. 2010-02-04. Retrieved 2010-06-25.
  10. Birch, Nicholas (2008-07-19). "The victim of Turkey's first gay honour killing?". The Independent. London.
  11. Deniz Yücel. "Ehrenmord in der Türkei: "Jeder soll wissen, ich bin schwul"". Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  12. Dan Bilefsky. "'Virgin suicides' save Turks' 'honor'". International Herald Tribune. Retrieved 2006-07-12.
  13. Daughter pregnant by rape, killed by family – World. BrisbaneTimes (2009-01-13). Retrieved on 2011-10-01.
  14. Tayyar, Şamil (2008-01-30). "'1' numara kim?". Star Gazete (in Turkish). Retrieved 2008-11-07.
  15. Amnesty International Archived May 2, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  16. Turkey: Torture/ill-treatment \n\n | Amnesty International
  17. "Eradicating Torture in Turkey's Police Stations: Analysis and Recommendations (A Human Rights Watch Background Briefing, September 2004)". Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  18. Info Sheet: Turkey decisions (updated) DOC
  19. Document Information | Amnesty International
  20. "Human Rights Watch World Report 2001: Turkey:Human Rights Developments". Retrieved 24 May 2016.
  21. "Radikal-çevrimiçi / Türkiye / Bir insan öldü, 18 gün geçti, hâlâ kapı duvar". Retrieved 24 May 2016.
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