Hacı Bişkin/ DUVAR

Reactions have mounted following the arrest of an 11-year-old Syrian child in the southeastern province of Batman, who was filmed while being taken in custody by police as he cried and while bystanders lamented that he was just a child. 

In a statement, the Batman governorate claimed that the child was taken into custody for his own protection during a routine operation focusing on children in the area who were begging or were being put to work.

The governorate said that four children were trying to clean the windows of cars in traffic, which was a risk to their safety, adding that three children fled the area while the Syrian child in question was taken into custody for his protection.  

The child was sent to a police station and later released to his father, who was fined 153 TL. 

Social services expert Nihat Tarımeri criticized the detention of the child in a statement: 

“No one can say, in the name of a child “I was protecting them” and create their own laws. This is a separate legal problem,” Tarımeri said. 

“For starters, we need to respect children’s rights, protect them, and improve these rights,” Tarımeri added.