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Villagers tortured under custody, report says

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Thirty-six villagers who were detained as part of an operation by Turkish security forces against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) terrorists in a village in Hakkari’s Şemdinli province were allegedly tortured in police custody, the Cumhuriyet daily reported on Monday.

The villagers were taken into custody after the operation on Sunday in the village of Altınsu in Şemdinli over their alleged links to the PKK. Twenty of the villagers were released on Monday morning, while 16 are still under custody at the district police department.

The Dihaber news agency, which published pictures of the villagers, claimed they were tortured while in custody. The report said more than 100 people, including women and children, were gathered and beaten in a square after their houses were raided and doors were broken at night.

The residents of the village, who were threatened with death, went to get a battery report from a doctor, who refused to provide it, saying they were responsible for what happened to them since they did not support the Turkish government.

One police officer was killed and one security force member was wounded during the conflict.

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