A recently published annual report by the Human Rights Association (İHD) reveals extensive human rights violations in Turkey, including extrajudicial killings, violence against women, restrictions on freedom of expression, and abuses within the country’s penal system.

Turkey’s Human Rights Association (İHD) released its comprehensive annual report on Tuesday, detailing a range of human rights abuse cases flagged to the organisation during 2022.

The leading rights watchdog highlighted 30 reported extrajudicial killings with 43 injury cases, 146 reported deaths due to official negligence with 2126 injury cases, and 407 reported deaths under armed conflict with 114 injury cases.

The association’s findings on human rights abuses in Turkish prisons revealed 1517 reported sick prisoners, including 651 reported critically ill, and 377 cases of reported disciplinary action. “The penal enforcement policy of the judiciary of the Republic of Turkey is discriminatory; political prisoners, unfortunately, serve a much larger proportion of their sentences compared to criminal prisoners,” the İHD said.

Cases of violence against women and children reported to the organisation in 2022 included 17 suicides, one honour killing, and two hate crimes against transgender women. Additionally, the İHD dealt with 72 child murder cases and 288 child abuse cases.

The rights watchdog also drew attention to the Turkish government’s inadequate disaster response in early 2023. “The earthquake on 6 February, which affected millions of people across a wide area and led to tens of thousands of deaths, has revealed that the state does not have a permanent policy in place for ensuring the safety of citizens’ lives and property, as well as search and rescue and humanitarian aid,” it said.

“While such a large discriminatory, exclusionary, and hate-organising policy is being followed in our geography, unfortunately, a large majority of political parties that define themselves as the opposition are not speaking out against these injustices,” the report warned.

The report criticised the Turkish government for not adhering to international agreements and its own laws, particularly in the areas of freedom of expression and assembly. It cited 76 İHD investigations into violations of freedom of expression, and 571 reported security interventions in public gatherings.

“The Republic of Turkey, which does not even act in accordance with its own constitution, is unfortunately in an extremely bad position regarding fundamental rights such as the right to life, the right not to be tortured, the right to freedom of expression and association, and the right not to be exposed to discrimination,” the İHD concluded.

“As human rights defenders, while announcing our ‘2022 human rights violations report’, we want to share with the public once again how determined we are in the struggle for human rights,” the İHD pledged.