Turkish police raid house of abducted civil servant

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The Zeybek couple

The wife of an allegedly abducted former civil servant announced on Twitter on Tuesday that the police searched their residence, although there is still no information on the whereabouts of the man since he disappeared 33 days ago.

Fatma Betül Zeybek, the wife of former Turkish Telecommunications Authority (BTK) employee Salim Zeybek, said police raided their house at around 1:20 am and asked about her husband. She criticized the police for the raid and for failing to search for her husband despite her appeals.

According to his wife, on the evening of Feb. 21 a group of armed men stopped their car and kidnapped Salim Zeybek. Although the men told her not to inform the police about the incident, she filed a complaint  with a prosecutor a few days later. The couple’s two children were also in the car at the time of the abduction.

Meanwhile, human rights activist and deputy from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu is continuing to post messages on social media on the growing number of abductions in Turkey.

On Tuesday the deputy wrote, “Everyone is talking about the upcoming elections, but as a human rights defender, I care about these six abducted men,” listing the names and number of days missing: Salim Zeybek, 34 days; Erkan Irmak, 38 days; Yasin Ugan, 42 days; Özgür Kaya, 42 days; Mustafa Yılmaz, 36 days; and Gökhan Türkmen, 47 days. Gergerlioğlu also questioned if these abductees are being tortured somewhere in an effort to raise awareness of the issue.

Most of these people are affiliated with the faith-based Gülen movement, which the government considers a terrorist organization responsible for a July 2016 failed coup. A German media outlet named Correctiv last fall published a detailed report stating that Turkey tortures abducted people in secret detention centers.

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