Top Turkish court finds violation of rights in ban on Saturday Mothers meeting for second time

Turkey's Constitutional Court has ruled for the second time that the Beyoğlu District Governor's Office violated the rights of Saturday Mothers by banning their meeting, who have been gathering in Galatasaray Square since 1995 against enforced disappearances of their relatives. The move came after the police detained Saturday Mothers four weeks in a row despite the first ruling.

Duvar English

For the second time, the Turkish Constitutional Court (AYM), which is the highest court for individual appeals in the country, has found violation of rights in the ban on Saturday Mother’s ("Cumartesi Anneleri" in Turkish) 700th vigil.

The move came after Turkish police attacked and detained members of Saturday Mothers at Istanbul’s Galatasaray Square for four weeks in a row in April despite the AYM’s initial ruling published on Feb. 23.

However, the AYM ruled that there was no "violation of the prohibition of ill-treatment."

After the second ruling, the Saturday Mothers said on Twitter that "The Constitutional Court once again made a violation decision regarding the intervention to the 700th vigil of the Saturday Mothers by police force. Galatasaray is ours!"

The Saturday Mothers have been gathering in Istanbul since 1995 to demand justice for their relatives who were allegedly disappeared and killed by undercover units.

The Istanbul Beyoğlu District Governor's Office banned the 700th meeting of Saturday Mothers on August 25, 2018 on the grounds that “no notification was made beforehand.”

On the 700th meeting, the police attacked the Saturday Mothers who gathered on the Galatasaray Square, the historical meeting point for the group, and detained 23 people. Afterwards, the security forces attacked people who were sitting in the nearby cafes with water cannons and tear gas and detained one person.

A Turkish court filed a lawsuit against 46 people on charges of "opposing the Law on Meetings and Demonstrations."