Turkish Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya on Nov. 8 stated that Saturday Mothers who have been detained by the police for 29 consecutive weeks “experience victimization,” upon Peoples' Equality and Democracy Party (HEDEP) lawmaker Dilan Kunt Ayan’s question.
Saturday Mothers have been organizing vigils in Galatasaray Square in Taksim, Istanbul since 1995 to demand the whereabouts of their relatives who disappeared in custody and to demand the prosecution of the perpetrators.
Saturday Mothers has met at the square for 29 weeks after the Constitutional Court's (AYM) ruling that their rights had been violated and have been detained with police violence.
Deputy Ayan told Minister Yerlikaya at the Parliamentary Plan and Budget Commission that the police intervened against the mothers and relatives of the disappeared with the power they received from the ministry. He showed Yerlikaya photographs of the detention of the mothers and relatives in handcuffs.
As a response, Yerlikaya stated, "What Saturday Mothers are experiencing is victimization. We will find a solution as soon as possible. You saw this week that we did not detain them."
For the first time after 29 weeks, the police on Nov. 4 did not detained the Saturday Mothers yet, blockaded the whole Galatarasay Square as they did in the previous weeks.
Turkish police are under the authority of the Interior Ministry and Yerlikaya has been a minister since the general elections on May. 14.