Turkish soldiers allegedly tortured a 16-year-old shepherd, questioning his presence at a rural location in the Derecik (Rûbarok) district of Kurdish-majority Hakkari (Colemêrg) to which he had brought livestock to access drinking water. The young shepherd and three relatives, aged between 16 and 20, were beaten at the scene and subsequently detained by the soldiers.
On Wednesday footage emerged on social media showing the group of soldiers beating a person in Derecik’s village of Anadağ, on the Iraqi Kurdistan border. The video shows the soldiers approaching one of the relatives filming the incident.
The 16-year-old, named Serhat T. was apprehended at a stream located about 500 metres below the village, at which point soldiers aggressively questioned him, demanding to know why he was there, Mezopotamya Agency reported. Locals insist that the area is not prohibited to civilians.
The mobile phones of the four individuals were also confiscated by the soldiers. On accessing a hard copy image attached to one of the devices of pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) former co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş, the soldiers insulted both the young detainees and the politician in the photograph, before tearing it up, as reported by Mezopotamya Agency.
Similar incidents involving Turkish soldiers have been reported in recent years near the border in the Derecik district. In 2019, 14-year-old Vedat Ekinci was fatally shot by Turkish soldiers. Local authorities claimed that Ekinci was killed having not complied to warning shots.
In 2021, Turkish soldiers opened fire on two civilians, seriously injuring one and killing their horses. The brother of the 17-year-old victim, who was critically injured, later revealed that the soldiers did not provide any assistance after the incident. Instead, citizens came to their aid and transported the injured victim to hospital.