The Urfa judiciary have not yet managed to initiate proceedings in the murder of three people, the investigation into which has been going on for three and a quarter years. However, they have pressed charges against the wife and mother of the three, who has been demanding justice for months. Urfa Primary Criminal Court No 2 stated that Emine Şenyaşar allegedly “insulted a public official”, on the basis of words she used on day 86 of the vigil she is holding together with her son Ferit, outside Urfa judicial buildings.
The public became aware of Emine Senyaşar when she launched a sit-in vigil in Turkey’s southeastern city of Urfa (Riha) demanding justice for her family members, who had been murdered by bodyguards of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) MP İbrahim Halil Yıldız.
Emine’s husband, Hacı Esvet Şenyaşar, and two of their sons, Adil and Celal, died in an armed attack by the bodyguards and relatives of the AKP MP for Urfa, İbrahim Halil Yıldız, in 2018.
Her son Fadıl has been sentenced to 37 years and 9 months in prison for his part in the incident in which his father and brothers were killed, despite being reported to have acted in self-defence. Yıldız’s brother was sentenced to 18 years for the same incident, having been caught red-handed on video, but none of the bodyguards or other relatives have faced charges for killing members of the Şenyaşar family.
Emine Şenyaşar and her other son Ferit have been demanding justice with a sit-in outside the court house in Urfa for 185 days. They say they are determined to follow the case through, and they are demanding that the perpetrators be punished. They have been beaten, abused and detained several times for the vigil they have been continuing. Moreover Emine Şenyaşar is now herself being prosecuted for “insulting” Ibrahim Halil Yıldız, and faces four years of imprisonment, Mesopotamia News Agency (MA) reports.
AKP MP Ibrahim Halil Yildiz was named as the complainant in the indictment, which was prepared upon completion of an investigation initiated by Urfa Public Prosecutor’s Office. The indictment calls for Emine Senyaşar to be sentenced to up to four years in prison.
The indictment of Emine Şenyaşar has been accepted by the Urfa Primary Criminal Court, and the first hearing in the case is scheduled for 12 November.
Emine Şenyaşar has been detained on the same charge on a previous occasion, on 15 March 2021 which was day 7 of her vigil, but she was released after giving a statement.
Meanwhile, the investigation into the murders of her family has been going on for three and a quarter years under an order of “secrecy”. A second appeal by lawyers for the Senyaşar family to overturn the secrecy order in the investigation was rejected on 21 April 2021. The Constitutional Court which the family is now also appealing to has not yet made its ruling. Among the family’s demands is the removal of the secrecy order in the case.