The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Monday rejected Turkey’s appeal against conviction in the case of 15-year-old Berkin Elvan, who died after being struck by a police gas canister during Istanbul’s 2013 Gezi Park protests.
The canister, fired by Turkish police during the anti-government demonstrations, hit Elvan on the head. The boy fell into a coma for 269 days and eventually died on 11 March 2014, emerging as an icon of the Gezi protests, and a symbol of injustice and resistance for dissidents in the country.
Berkin, who weighed 45 kg when he was injured, had dropped to 16 kg by the day he died.
On 7 February, nearly a decade after the incident, Turkey was convicted by the top European human rights court, in the case brought by Elvan’s family.
The Court specifically determined that the Turkish authorities had failed to fulfil their procedural obligation to conduct a thorough investigation into the potential involvement of Istanbul’s law-enforcement director and/or governor regarding Elvan’s death.
Turkey subsequently appealed the ECHR’s February ruling. However, with the ECHR’s latest decision, the judgement against Turkey has become final.