The bar head of the border province of Hatay, Ekrem Dönmez, has said that he filed a complaint against police officers who detained him by force in the province’s İskenderun district.
Dönmez was detained late on July 29 after he refused to show his ID to a group of police officers, saying that there were no grounds for them make such request.
“What’s the basis of your request to see my ID?” Dönmez reportedly asked the officers.
Footage of the incident shows police officers trying to grab the bar head repeatedly despite his objections.
“Do not touch me,” Dönmez says in the footage.
Commenting on the incident, the bar head of the western province of Aydın, Gökhan Bozkurt, said that Dönmez was detained while he was having dinner with his family.
“Dönmez was forcefully detained by police in a restaurant while he was having dinner with his family. I can only share this information. We all stand with him,” Bozkurt tweeted.
Police have released a statement following backlash, saying that Dönmez was released after his testimony was taken and that the whole process was within legal boundaries.
According to police, routine controls were carried out ahead of Eid al-Adha across Turkey on July 29, adding that those who are asked to show their IDs must do so or otherwise they would be detained.
It also said that police officers seen in the footage “were kind.”
Dönmez, meanwhile, said that the police officers who detained him must be suspended and arrested.
He also said that police have to explain the grounds for asking someone for their ID.
“We have to decide whether we are a police state or a state of law. We’re going through a process that all the critical voices are suppressed. Yesterday’s incident is linked to that,” Dönmez told reporters on July 30.
According to Dönmez, Hatay provincial police chief Vedat Yavuz said that he should’ve told the police officers that he is the head of a bar.