Lawyer Ahmet Atış was insulted and beaten by military police officers, including the commander of a military base, because he had spoken Kurdish with his clients in Urfa.

Lawyer Ahmet Atış from the Association of Lawyers for Freedom (ÖHD) was subjected to racist violence by Turkish soldiers in the province of Urfa. The lawyer was the victim of a physical and verbal assault at a police station because of a conversation with his clients in Kurdish. According to Atış, the incident took place at the military police base in the industrial district of Urfa. The commander of the base was also involved in the attack.

Atış’s clients are workers from the textile industry who have been on strike for twelve days against repression, dismissals and threats by the Özak-Tekstil company. Last Wednesday, the gendarmerie (military police) attacked the strikers and detained several of them using violence. Ahmet Atış is the legal representative of the striking workers. When he spoke to his clients in Kurdish after their interrogation, he was initially approached by a police officer who said that he didn’t understand anything and that they should speak Turkish.

“When I reminded him of the legal regulations on lawyer interviews, a person claiming to be the commander of the military base appeared together with four other people in camouflage clothing,” said Atış. They immediately physically attacked the lawyer who was beaten with punches. His clients and colleagues confirmed the incident.

After reporting the attack together with his colleagues, Atış went to Balıklıgöl State Hospital in Urfa and had his injuries documented. He filed a criminal complaint against the perpetrators for “intentional bodily harm, insult and obstructing the performance of his duties”. He also requested that the camera recordings at the police station be examined and the identity of the suspects established.


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