Ads Top

Turkey has signed abduction agreements. Dissidents are disappearing from abroad

The harsh practices of the government under President Erdoğan have been leaking to the public since the beginning of his term. However, United Nations correspondents have revealed how far its influence actually extends. In a joint letter of 5 May 2020, it states that Turkey has signed agreements with a number of countries around the world. The result should be the systematic abduction and repatriation of Turks from abroad. The list also mentions European countries.

"The systematic state practice of abductions and forced return of Turkish citizens from several countries," reads the whole description of the mentioned practice. Bilateral security agreements cover references to the so-called fight against terrorism and international crime. Moreover, these terms are not clearly defined, allegedly for the purpose of expelling or abducting anyone declared by the Turkish government to be a security risk.

The machinery of removing uncomfortable individuals from abroad was greatly started by the failed coup attempt in 2016, in which Erdoğan accused the Muslim cleric Fethullah Gülen. Members of his movement, called Hizmet (FETÖ), in a state officially known as a terrorist organization, are among the critics of the current regime.

Since then, hundreds of people connected to Hizmet have been repatriated, and in 40 cases it was directly a kidnapping. The same procedure often applied to the rest of the family, including children. The document mentions a number of countries around the world. Specifically, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Gabon, Lebanon, Kazakhstan and, last but not least, the European countries of Kosovo and Albania. Already in 2018, the Turkish Foreign Ministry informed the parliament that it had contacted 83 states with a request for the repatriation of 453 individuals.

And if the Turkish authorities and their counterparts failed to intervene by force in some cases, they resorted at least to the abolition of citizenship or the cancellation of the passport. The peculiarity, however, is that Turkey does not hide any of the above-mentioned practices. "The Turkish authorities not only acknowledged direct responsibility for the abductions and illegal repatriation, but also promised further covert operations in the future," the letter said.

The course of the process
The first step in the violent process is to regularly provide an updated list to foreign authorities. He names individuals who have fallen into disfavor, and the Turkish government wants them back in their home country. The abduction itself, after close monitoring, is carried out by the state security forces. And since it's a secret mission, they're usually dressed and driving unmarked vehicles.

Probably the roughest, but at the same time less mapped part is the period of up to several weeks, when the individual does not show up in public at all. According to the victims, they are being tortured (such as waterboarding or electric shocks) and humiliated in order to obtain a criminal confession for an upcoming court in Turkey.

Powered by Blogger.