İHD: Relatives of the Disappeared Are Not Alone!


Relatives of the disappeared are not alone!

Our search for truth and justice will continue until we find the disappeared and bring the perpetrators before justice!


22 July 2023


The press statement and sit-in scheduled to be held in front of Galatasaray High School in İstanbul by the relatives of the disappeared and Saturday People in order to ask the fate of their disappeared relatives and to demand that the perpetrators be found and brought to justice was prevented by police violence and detentions in Istanbul and Dersim on the 956th week of peaceful vigils.

Although the Constitutional Court has ruled that it is a constitutional right for everyone to peacefully assemble and demonstrate without prior permission, Saturday People and relatives of disappeared persons who have been exercising their right to peaceful assembly for the last 16 weeks and demanding the discovery of the fate of their disappeared relatives have been taken into custody in the presence of the 16 bar associations’ presidents.

İHD decided to hold simultaneous statements of support and solidarity with the Saturday People and relatives of the disappeared in every city where there are İHD branches at the same time every Saturday as long as the detentions and preventions continue. Within this framework, on Saturday, 22 July 2023, the support and solidarity statement of the Dersim Branch of the Human Rights Association was violently intervened and 6 executives and members, including our branch co-chairs Gürbüz Solmaz and Gönül Sonbahar, were taken into custody. At the same time, members of the press who were reporting the press statement were battered and were not allowed to record the statement.

We demand the immediate release of the Saturday People and relatives of the disappeared who were taken into custody in İstanbul and Dersim, and we demand immediate legal action against all public administrators who ban citizens’ right to assembly and peaceful demonstration and prevent them with police violence despite the Constitutional Court judgment.

We call on the authorities, who should have asked the fate of every citizen subjected to enforced disappearance in this land even before their relatives, to identify the perpetrators and bring them to justice, to immediately release the relatives of the disappeared and the Saturday People. Do your primary duty and make an effort to investigate the fate of the disappeared people and find their perpetrators.