Nineteen people, including Istanbul’s Şişli Deputy Mayor Cihan Yavuz, were detained during house raids in Istanbul on 26 November. Those detained included activists, politicians and journalists.
After six days of detention, six people, including Yavuz, were arrested and sent to prison based on the allegation of “being a member of an organization”.
Being involved in party political activities, attending funerals of relatives, and participating in demonstrations and public events, which were held with the permission of the governorship, were listed as grounds for detention, according to Mesopotamia News Agency report.
Deputy Mayor Yavuz was interrogated regarding his political activities in the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), when he was serving as HDP’s Istanbul Provincial Executive in 2014 and 2018.
The demonstrations and public events Yavuz attended in those years, the tapes of the telephone conversations he had with party members, and the interviews he gave regarding the hunger strikes launched by Leyla Güven, the Democratic Society Congress (DTK) Co-Chair, have all been listed as grounds of accusations against the politician.
Attending a nephew’s funeral is a crime
Alaettin Altıntaş, a member of the Anatolia Association for Solidarity with Families Who Lost Their Relatives (ANYAKAY-DER), who was arrested within the scope of the same investigation, was accused of attending his nephew Burhan Altıntaş’s funeral.
Nazım Adıgüzel is also among the six people who were arrested. The money he sent for his imprisoned brother was listed as part of the accusations interpreted by the state as “collecting money on behalf of an organization”.
People’s Democratic Congress (HDK) member Mizgin Aksu was released on the condition of judicial control after being detained within the scope of the same investigation. Aksu was asked about when and by whom the HDK was established. Her phone calls with the HDK executives about the women’s conference and general meetings held in 2019 have also become the subject of accusations against her.
Laughing is also prohibited
Stating that they were subjected to psychological torture during their detention, Aksu noted that the police constantly interrupted them when they were having having conversations among friends during their time in custody. Police asked us to stop laughing, Aksu said.