Levent Gök, former deputy speaker of the Turkish Parliament, has commissioned a monument sculpture to memorialise the 2011 Roboski Massacre in Turkey, where a Turkish Armed Forces aircraft killed 34 people, including 19 children. The sculpture, awaiting placement in Roboski due to weather conditions, features the names of the victims and a depiction of a mourning mother.
The sculpture’s weeping mother design “represents every mother who lost a child”, said Gök, who is also a former MP from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP). He emphasised that the pain of the families affected by the massacre has not been forgotten.
The case of the Roboski Massacre, which is now unresolved for over a decade, stands as a stark example of the state’s impunity policy for law enforcement crimes. Mainstream media initially overlooked the tragedy until announced by the General Staff Headquarters. Subsequent investigations, including a parliamentary sub-commission, ended without holding anyone accountable, attributing the incident to a “lack of coordination”.
Justice-seeking families of the victims faced procedural rejections and delays in their applications to the Constitutional Court and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Batman (Elîh) Bar Association President Erkan Şenses underscored the importance of accountability, stating, “Those responsible for this massacre must be brought before the court”.
Şenses criticised the response from the Justice Ministry and the government’s role in the case, pointing out contradictions in their stance towards seeking justice in military courts. “It’s scandalous because the government stated in 2017 that the military judiciary, military Supreme Court, and military courts were not impartial and independent. They gathered ‘Yes’ votes to abolish the military judiciary in the  referendum. But the same government unfortunately did not feel the need to take a decision given by the military judiciary in 2014 to the Court of Appeals (Yargıtay), and this is a serious contradiction,” he explained. He expressed hope that the Constitutional Court would recognise a violation in the case, paving the way for prosecuting those responsible.