In the 751st week of their protest, relatives of those who disappeared in Turkey in the 1990s and the Human Rights Association (İHD) Diyarbakır (Amed) branch assembled on Saturday in Diyarbakır to demand the truth behind the disappearances and the prosecution of those responsible.
The demonstration featured a banner displaying the photographs of the missing individuals, with a particular focus on Dr. Recai Aydın, who vanished in Silvan (Farqîn) in 1994. Speaking at the gathering, İHD executive Ercan Yılmaz condemned the continued police repression against the Saturday Mothers, another group protesting disappearances from Istanbul’s Galatasaray Square, and emphasised the importance of upholding the Constitutional Court’s ruling declaring the prevention of their protest as a violation of their rights.
The disappearance of Dr. Recai Aydın remains shrouded in mystery. On 2 July 1994, Aydın’s car, which was discovered with its doors open at a road junction in Silvan, deviated from his regular work route. Despite numerous inquiries made by his family to various official institutions, no information regarding his fate was obtained. Fırat Akdeniz, a member of the İHD Diyarbakır Branch Disappearance Commission, revealed that Abdulkadir Aygan, a hitman for the clandestine organisation Gendarmerie Intelligence and Counterterrorism (JİTEM), confessed in 2005 that “Recai Aydın was among the people executed by JİTEM.” Seeking justice, Akdeniz called for a resolution to Aydın’s 29-year-old case.
Meanwhile, the İHD and the relatives of the disappeared also gathered in Batman (Êlih) during the 587th week of their protest. Participants demanded justice for People’s Labour Party (HEP) Diyarbakır provincial chairman Vedat Aydın, who was kidnapped and murdered on 5 July 1991. Sinan Gegin, an executive of the İHD Batman Branch, highlighted that Aydın’s killers continue to evade justice despite 32 years passing since the crime. Gegin accused various authorities, including government officials and military units, of protecting the murderers.