Top Turkish prosecutor holds Gezi Park defendants responsible for death of Berkin Elvan

The Court of Cassation’s chief public prosecutor has held Gezi Park defendants, including opposition TİP MP Can Atalay, responsible for the death of Berkin Elvan. A police officer shot 15-year-old Berkin Elvan in the head with a tear gas canister and caused his death during the 2013 Gezi Park protests.

Duvar English

The chief public prosecutor's office of the Court of Cassation has penned their opinion on the Gezi Park case and held defendants responsible for the death of Berkin Elvan, 15-year-old Kurdish boy who was killed by police during the 2013 Gezi Protests.

Elvan was shot by a tear gas canister fired by police during the Gezi Park protests, which took place in Istanbul’s Taksim following harsh government response to a group of protesters trying to prevent the cutting down of trees for a large development project planned by the government.

The written opinion (“tebliğname”) of Prosecutor Zafer Şahin argued that the Gezi Protests created an atmosphere of violence, which led to the death of Berkin Elvan, online news outlet Kısa Dalga reported

Şahin said the forums were held in Istanbul and Turkey “in order to direct the social mobility that emerged after the Gezi,” and members of Taksim Solidarity, Tayfun Kahraman, Şerafettin Can Atalay (who was elected as a parliamentarian in the May 14 elections), attended one of those meeting on June 27, 2013 at Garaj Istanbul, and “it was understood that Berkin Elvan lost his life in the environment of violence.”

While the prosecutor was holding the forums responsible for the “atmosphere of violence,” Elvan was injured on June 16, 11 days before the prosecutor’s mention of the date of the forum.

Elvan died in March 2014 after 269 days in a coma. Police officer Fatih Dalgalı was sentenced to 16 years and eight months in jail over the murder of Elvan.

Prosecutor Şahin also mentioned deceased businessperson İshak Alaton as “defendant” despite he was never a defendant in the case.