Turkish security forces abused and tortured victims of February earthquake, say human rights groups 

ISTANBUL — Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch conducted a joint investigation that reported 13 cases of violence practiced by the Turkish police against 34 victims in the areas affected by the devastating February earthquake, 12 of whom were tortured, and two of whom were threatened with weapons.

The investigation stated that the state of emergency imposed by the Turkish government in the ten provinces affected by the devastating earthquake led to lawlessness, and the security forces practiced violence without deterrence or punishment.

According to eyewitnesses of police violence, the state of emergency provided additional cover for lawlessness among security officials who trust they will not face punishment. Rates of torture and police ill-treatment against detained persons have increased dramatically since the failed 2016 coup attempt, according to Al-Monitor.

Human Rights Watch confirmed that the violence practiced in Turkey targets minorities in particular, and third of the victims were Syrian refugees.