Asylum - Misinformation

Did Turkey's Gendarmerie Batter Syrian Refugee in Sanliurfa?

  Monday 19th August 2019

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  • 08-19

Facebook page “ANT Kurdistan” has posted a video that shows members of Turkey’s Gendarmerie kicking a person and battering him with batons. In addition, persons can be heard talking about the assaulted person in Arabic. “The video shows a Syrian refugee being battered because he refused to return to Syria,” the page has claimed. “This was his requital.”

Media professional Sameer Matni has shared the video on his page, which has over 200,000 followers, repeating the same claims. The video has gone viral with thousands of views and hundreds of shares.

Verify platform searched for the origin source of the video and reached the conclusion that it dates back to mid-2018 and took places in Aydilnar village in Harran district of the Turkish province of Sanliurfa.

The video shows a brawl between farmers over a piece of land. Therefore, Turkey’s Gendarmerie intervened to stop it. However, members of Gendarmerie were beaten with sticks and stones, then they used violence against farmers, according to Turkish media outlets.

Sanliurfa Province statement on the incident reads in part, “On April 25, 2018 a brawl erupted between two groups in which stones and sticks were used because of a dispute over pieces of lands. Gendarmerie intervened to stop the brawl but they were resisted.”

The statement came in response to the opposition accusations of the government of using violence against farmers. “Gendarmerie assaulted farmers because they refused to sell a piece of land to a member of Justice and Development Party (AKP),” Mahmut Tunnel, a deputy of Republican People's Party (CHP), tweeted. Following his tweet, a lawsuit was filed against him.

The Turkish authorities have repatriated hundreds of Syrian refugees from different cities, most notably Istanbul, on the pretext of not being resident in their province of registration or not being registered in Turkey. Dozens of photos and videos emerged that shows that the Turkish authorities have repatriated dozens of Syrian refugees to Syria.