Explicit evidence of Turkish state violence — in pictures

by ROAR Collective on June 5, 2013

Post image for Explicit evidence of Turkish state violence — in pictures

These photos reveal the ugly side of the Turkish economic miracle: an authoritarian neoliberal state willing to kill in order to preserve its place.

Editor’s note: We do not share this post lightly. Over the course of the past couple of days, the Turkish government — one of the main allies of the United States in the region and a prospective member of the European Union — has launched a brutal crackdown on its own citizens. Peaceful protesters have been beaten, clubbed, kicked, gassed, hosed, strangled, shot at and killed. At least three are reported dead and many thousands injured, while police violence continues unabated.

The aim of this photo collection is to spread awareness about the extreme abuse of state power by the Erdogan government, the impunity of Turkish police as they publicly torture and maim their fellow citizens, and the bloody extremes to which the neoliberal state is willing to go in its suppression of human dignity and democratic principles. ROAR stands in solidarity with those who have chosen to struggle for freedom, justice and democracy everywhere. We reject the shallow hypocrisy of those world leaders — most notably US and EU officials — who not only provide the very weapons with which the Turkish state is currently quashing popular dissent, but who also continue to disrespect the right to peaceful protest of their own citizens back home.

WARNING: The photos below are extremely graphic and shocking. Please proceed in full knowledge of the fact that whatever you see here is happening to real people living in a supposedly democratic state — one that has been touted by Western media as a “role model” for the post-revolutionary Arab world and that has in recent years become a darling of the Obama administration, the European Union and the international business community. While prime minister Erdogan himself is directly and principally responsible for these heinous acts of state terror, the tragic deaths and horrible injuries seen below can by no means be isolated from the responsibility of the global community in sustaining his increasingly authoritarian rule.

It is for this reason that we share these photos below.

In solidarity,

The ROAR Collective

{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

Dominique Burrows June 5, 2013 at 04:12

We stand squarely behind you; you are not alone or been forgotten keep up the protest as we are all working together to bring a different world that we can all live in harmoniously keep the faith we are all behind you


GHOST June 5, 2013 at 05:50



Kate Walsh June 5, 2013 at 06:40

I was watching the horror unfold this weeked via facebook mostly and thankfully RT NEWS. Im in the UK and im sickened by the photos which i have been sharing to try and wake people of the UK! I cant believe that i was seeing police behaving in such an aggressive manner not only towards their own people but children and the elderly and some video footage on RT proved it was unprovoked!!! So my question is; what happens when they put their riot gear on ?? I seriously can not believe they are paid enough to torture in public as agressively as i was seeing without being mentally deranged!! My heart was saddened by everything i was seeing you are all very courageus. POWER TO THE PEOPLE XX


Leftway June 5, 2013 at 08:47

When you put on riot gear, you become a cop. And, as we anarchists say, All Cops Are Bastards.
Here we see in a glance what is prepared for us, when Eurozone colapses. And it is in no way exagerated, sufficient to look at Greece, where local police quell protests hand in hand with neonazis. Thus it is even more imporatnt to express SOLIDARITY TO ALL THE BRAVE TURKISH PROTESTERS. LET’S MAKE TAKSIM EVERYWHERE!

ps: I don’t think that RT is exactly the good resource for world news. It is hypocritical like most of the western media, in the way that it criticises all the bad things just until thye are not in Putin’s interests.

For turkish protests I recommend:


Hical June 8, 2013 at 07:09

Leftway….I agree with you that the attrocities being committed here are unthinkable and repulsive, but please, please don’t paint all police as bastards. “Most” are good officers who strive to improve the quality and safety of the public they serve, only the bad ones are the focus of the media and public scrutiny. If you truly feel that all police are bastards, then there’s no question that you’ve been on the opposite side of the law. Better attitude equals better behaviour.


George Winter June 10, 2013 at 15:43

Hical & Leftway, I don’t know if either of you has been in Istanbul recently, but the image of police here is definitely closer to what Leftway describes: when talking to my students about crime and justice (one of the subjects in our English coursebooks), I have never, ever heard any stories of police effectively helping a citizen in this city. All the stories were about incompetence, corruption, apathy, and fear.

The only thing police are ever seen doing in this city is using tear gas and disproportional force to break up peaceful protests, and that didn’t start with Gezi Park but months before.

If walking a shopping street with ten friends and one or two banners is on the opposite side of the law, Hical, then yes, you’re right, but many choose instead to consider it an essential citizen’s right in a true democracy.

So, to summarize, in this city, all cops I’ve ever seen were bastards. I feel a lot safer now they’re out of sight, and I’m far from the only one to think so.


Franco Tanzarella June 5, 2013 at 08:58

I have you all in my heart and I’m behind you 100%. I believe you are making a great difference not only for you own country but also for the rest of the world. Show the world the power of the people. Stay strong and keep fighting, they’re time will come.

Your support in South Africa.


huever June 5, 2013 at 09:22

Horrible, this is horrible…
Fuck off all the fascist governments and its fucking coward police.
All our support and love from the people from Spain to the people of Turkey that are fighting for its rights.


Asgardi Metrovich June 5, 2013 at 13:14

could you please explain what is “neoliberal” about Erdogan and AKP (the party currently in power in Turkey)?
Stratfor has characterized the AKP economic policy as “an aggressive form of capitalism that defies environmental considerations as well as Islamic values” (http://www.stratfor.com/analysis/turkeys-violent-protests-context) – is this what you mean by “neoliberal”?

and it’s not “the state” who is willing to kill, but the prime-minister with Islamist-conservative leanings, who wants to crush any opposition to his increasingly authoritarian rule.
consider for example the following excerpts from various articles dealing with the events in Turkey:
* big business cowered in fear of a powerful government that had demonstrated its willingness to punish firms that failed to heel to the prime minister and his party (http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/139432/steven-a-cook/keep-calm-erdogan)
* The AKP’s neo-Islamist outlook has become more noticeable as Erdogan’s power has grown (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/03/turkey-protests-erdogan-autocratic-ambitions)
* Erdogan’s response has fed the fears of many secular Turks that he is bent on pursuing an authoritarian, Islamist and neo-Ottoman agenda (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-03/erdogan-shows-why-turkey-shouldn-t-give-him-more-power.html)
* At the core of the conflict lies the “Ataturkian mandate.” Kemal Ataturk is considered the founder of modern Turkey, establishing the post-Ottoman nation as a secular state that should avoid overextending its reach beyond its borders. Erdogan is seen as having overstepped those boundaries (http://www.forbes.com/sites/afontevecchia/2013/06/03/turkeys-violent-protests-explained-not-economic-but-cultural-as-erdogan-grips-to-power/)


Jon Skjeseth June 5, 2013 at 14:49

normally under demonstrations, u will find groups of ppl that turns things violent. in turkey, that never happened, because the bullies from day 1 was the police. and the more peacefull protester that came to show their support, the more violent the police got. and to top that you have an arrogant leader, who still havent got it.
i support you. i support freedom. i support enviroment.


hiro June 5, 2013 at 15:00

All the police , all over the world, in such events are the same animals !


William Ritke-Jones June 5, 2013 at 15:01

My god, I thought the NYC, Oakland and Chicago police were a bunch of corporate thugs and assholes, but these police make the U.S. cops look like choir boys. Tell us what we can do to support you. Love and support from Vermont, U.S.


Joaquim Carlos June 5, 2013 at 15:27

A brutalidade de policia é arrepiante. Os filhos do POVO deviam recuar-se a actuar desta forma.


Zack June 5, 2013 at 15:58

Horrifying images of brutality indeed. Erdogan’s regime is more than authoritarian but looking more like a dictatorship now. Let’s not forget Hitler himself was an elected representative of German people and we all know the consequences now. World community should take action before this mad man turns this country to a war zone.


Skydancer June 5, 2013 at 16:37

Please read this.
As a citizen of Turkey, these pictures are %100 correct. Also there are some unrevealed pictures and videos due to extreme actions of the Turkish police. The government are still taking no responsibility for these actions and they are still trying to justify their beloved, honorless police. Please try to understand the meaning of the Police State, Turkey is a police state in these days. There are government Islamic fanatics beating up the protestors with the help of the police. And the protestors doing nothing but standing up for their country. Because the prime minister’s regime is going straightly and relentlessly to Fascism, Dictatorship. And The Turkish Government are in full denial.
I have seen things i wish i hadn’t seen for my life. Psychologically speaking, i had seen images that i could not erase from my memory until I die. I am not exaggarating anything, as a matter of fact there are a lot of pretty disturbing images if you scroll up. Think that you have seen these things right in front of you. I have felt fear and chaos, for the first time in my life with this ongoing police brutality. I am 22 years old. Only thing that you can do is you can emphatize about us but trust me, that is nothing.
Also I can clearly say that the mainstream media in Turkey is not showing any of these pictures, videos. There was a full media blackout in the first days of the events. When I was in the first days of these protests, i called my mother -which is living in the south of turkey,- mediterrenean area. I asked her that if you heard anything about the fuck is happening in Istanbul, and she said nothing. Absolutely nothing, she hasn’t heard anything. In the meantime in Istanbul i was beaten by the police, teargassed, trying to escape from the police. Thats just because we are standing our democratic rights and absolutely nothing else.
We can only communicate through social media channels like twitter/facebook. Also eksisozluk played a vital role in these days. Today is the 8th day of these protests and police brutality is starting to decrease. But we are not going to stop i am telling you. We will not stop. This Turkish people is not going to stop. They have woken up from an everlasting dream which we have been having for years!
Also I have to say;
You may have heard about some rumours about the police that attacking to doctors, nurses, infirmary’s and hospitals which trying to aid the wounded. They are explicitly true. They teargassed hospitals and attacked them. They teargassed an university campus. They guarded a hospital so people cannot enter it. Even in a war, you cannot and will not attack to an hospital. That is inhumane.
And we are not dealing with humans here.
That is pretty much what’s happening in Turkey.


_ June 5, 2013 at 16:44

The People will win. The People ALWAYS win. You would do well to remember that, Turkish leaders.


toh chin hong June 5, 2013 at 17:02

we Malaysian re facing same dictator like you, but in our word we say “lawan tetap lawan”(never give up ), we re with you


Carlos June 5, 2013 at 17:42

These thugs will not prevail. We will not tolerate police brutality any more. We are all watching and supporting you. How brave you are!


Just A Guy June 5, 2013 at 17:49

So somebody explain to me the difference between Erdogan and Hussein? Oh, hang on, that’s right, Turkey doesn’t have such rich oil reserves…

Shameful neanderthals only surpassed by the so-called peaceful UN member states who knowingly let this happen.


john June 6, 2013 at 02:13

well, hussein killed thousands of his own people with chemical weapons. a total of like five people have died in turkey on account of the police repression.


jack June 10, 2013 at 02:26
David June 5, 2013 at 17:50

What idiot brings a little girl or old woman to these protests?

There is not a single state in the world that would allow a large group of people rebel they way these hippies did. Why not show the damage they have done?


Elle June 8, 2013 at 01:41

I am English, and have been living in Turkey for the past 17 years. Before you start calling people “idiots & hippies” … please get educated about the situation!! the police have shot tear gas canisters through peoples home windows and cars….. These people were not protesting… they were suppose to be in the safe environment of their own spaces. I was bringing my daughter (9 yrs old) out of her sports club lesson, and the way we had to walk home took us through a protest… were I saw 1st hand they were peacefully protesting…. the police launched tear gas as we were walking by (innocently!!!) so thats why you see pictures of young children & elderly people!! this police violence is happening right outside their schools, clubs, parks, playgrounds & homes!! Have you not seen the photos of protestors cleaning the streets themselves the following mornings??? They have every right to stand their ground, and not be dictated to by a facist government. I respect each & every one of them… they are not rebels or hippies…. they are normal people who want a normal life!


Mark Nighswander June 5, 2013 at 18:13

Give it time. Repression to this level never lasts. What we are seeing right now is the Lucifer Effect as documented by Zimbardo. Eventually we will see the inclusive political/economic virtuous circle effect as promoted by Acemoglu in “Why Nations Fail”. Because the Turkish Government as it is now, will fail. That is the only direction it is heading. It happened in Russia. It happened in China and it will happen in Turkey. The government will change. The criminals will be brought to justice. People will pay for the torture and inhumanity we see in the photo documentation. Memories are very long. The Turkish government would like to think that these images will disappear into thin air. So would the Americans and the EU. But they won’t. They are here. They are with us. Always.


ekko June 5, 2013 at 18:28

I am sickened by the photos also. But, also share photos of protesters throwing stones, burning shops, cars and ambulances , and ones trying to lynch a policeman.These may give same idea why police became so though. I hope you’ll be publishing your country’s polices pictures(not allowed or risky in your country, than easy way blame Turkish police!!)?


frack June 6, 2013 at 01:22

Why don’t you put the pictures of poor police being abused by the protesters in reddit and put a link here so we can all see…


Hical June 8, 2013 at 07:10

EXACTLY!! Well stated.


hakan June 5, 2013 at 19:02

Thank you for letting people see what is really happening in Turkey.


Francisco June 5, 2013 at 20:53

respect to all the turkish resistance. you’re something the bright side of this planet can be proud of, contrarily to those damn cops and bloody politicians. keep up, and good luck.


Andropoulos June 5, 2013 at 21:02

In England, France, Russia! or other democratic country have been occured many riots recently which mostly compressed brutely! We saw all images and listened all official expressions, (see Cameron’s speeches on London riots)! Well, these countries’ representetives and people must look their “democratic compressing” on the riots, after then they must speak about Turkish goverment’s reaction!!! And I must say that in Istanbul, everything is ok! The resistence in Taksim for the green is still countuining, in Turkey nobody is against them buttt the other little riots are almostly over! These riots started by some marginal groups which supported by some external powers! I would like to express that some opportunist people! Do not wait for a wide riot, coup, revolution etc. here, do not confuse Turkey with other tribal countries! Here is a democratic country and goverment will elect by election only!!!


Lazoras June 5, 2013 at 21:27

As an american, I am getting very upset with the police / government and am starting to feel a very very strong urge to do something even though i know we’ll be hated for interfering =/


Eduardo June 5, 2013 at 21:33

Es una salvajada en nuestro idioma español,lo que vemos que las fuerzas policiales turcas,hacen con los ciudadanos de ese país.Una protesta para las autoridades que han permitido este sangriento atropello ya que esta en contra de los derechos civiles ,hablar de leyes cuando ellos (las autoridades)lasa quebrantan. Basta de impunidad ,se debe de poner un hasta aquí a esta fechoria


Tuna Tolga June 5, 2013 at 21:44

I am from Turkey and i can not write my real name here. Some of my friends arrested because of using twitter to share their thoughts. we really need support… thanx for your sense of humanity.


Andropoulos June 6, 2013 at 01:18

You can not write your real names, because you’re telling lie!!! Do you call for the external powers? Is this your revolution spirit? You’re just opportunist, you all want to cause a chaos here to arrive your targets! In Turkey everything is ok! You some people always are unrest from this goverment! If you have some democratic spirit wait for the election but sorry the result will be the same with your favour! Thank to yourself…


Andropoulos June 6, 2013 at 01:30

Do you call the external powers to your country? Is this your revolutionary spirit? Did they share their own thoughts or spread misinformations!!! We all know the real, pls tell the truth!


jack June 10, 2013 at 02:28

Nobody is asking for external powers to bring their troops. They asking other countries to pressure Erdogan to stop police violence.


sian June 5, 2013 at 21:46

Wow. I did a bit of photojournalism in the day and I understand
it’s importance more than ever. Get these images out to the world
as most news outlets simply will not broadcast it. Shame on conventional
media largely controlled by corporations.

Vive Turkey


stupid protestants June 5, 2013 at 22:25

why do they go to protest?
people want this !


Hüseyin June 5, 2013 at 22:36

Turkish police using plastic bullet and aiming peoples head. Please add this to your post.


Sercan Şeker June 5, 2013 at 22:58

They aim Tear Gas our face, head or eyes. It’s unacceptable.



John Ellis June 5, 2013 at 23:26

I am so sorry that this crime has been done to you beautiful people.So very sorry.


James Herriott June 6, 2013 at 00:36

The violence these police officers are committing against people they are sworn to protect is despicable. Something has to change! Stay strong, the WORLD respects you.


nesli gedik June 10, 2013 at 21:47

thank you Sir. People are fighting for defend their rights, freedom; briefly, for the protection of democracy. that, I can guarantee you.


Tremblant Terre June 6, 2013 at 02:13

Muslims deserves every thing they get and more until they fully understand and realize that this is payback for the evil they have committed for the past 1400 years.

Innocent children are – always – the exception. Peace and love unto them.


Onur One June 7, 2013 at 21:25

Narrow minds and haters deserves the worst of everything. Your hate brings us to this violence in the whole world.


Hasan Çağatay June 8, 2013 at 03:13

I am from Turkey and I am not a Muslim. This is the first time I have ever wrote a comment on a website, because I have never read such a cruel comment ever. Seeing all these pictures, how can a human being write such a comment? It seems that you are religious and I wonder what kind of god do you believe? No good god would want you to be so cruel. No good god can let you go in heaven. Are you sure that you are not the one who is committed to evil?


turkish citizen June 10, 2013 at 08:27

protesters are provoking police by cursing, thowing stones and bottles to them. there is never anything like this when demonstration is peaceful.


Pnr Cls September 21, 2013 at 01:46

Your comment is unbelievable and of course Muslims do not deserve such a violence. Nobody deserves this.

But FYI, a very big percentage of these protestors are were only born in a Muslim country but they are not believers. Actually who is committing this crime are the so-called Muslim ones!

But although I am not a Muslim myself and support the protestors, I would never wish anything bad or evil to the Muslims. We dont want Turkey to become a police state and we dont like how these people turn our lives into a nightmare but I would still never wish them dead or something JUST BECAUSE they are Muslims


Zob June 7, 2013 at 10:30

To those who don’t know what they are talking about:

You say “why don’t you put pictures of the damage these protesters have done? Why don’t you show their treatment of the police?”

How clueless can you be? There are no such pictures because there is no such event. Thanks to social media, it is now almost impossible to write history as you see fit. Everything is laid bare for the whole world to see. There are no hurt police officers, except for the one that drove off a cliff while chasing protesters.

As for city damage; in any protest there are those who enjoy vandalism. This is inevitable. However, in Turkey the majority tries to warn them, stop them, and preach calm and responsible behavior. Where in the world have you seen protesters come back to put loose bricks back in their place and clean the area with garbage bags in their hands?

This may seem like a typical “hippie causing chaos” to you from where you sit comfortably, but I assure you this is nothing like what the world is used to. This is a fight for freedom of speech and democracy the way it was supposed to be. This is something that should be seen and followed as an example by the whole world.


turkishpolicebrutality.tk June 7, 2013 at 13:39

Here a lot of pictures of protests in Turkey


Onur One June 7, 2013 at 21:24

Thanks for solidarity. It means a lot to us.


Ablitive Abstitute June 8, 2013 at 18:55

One reason why people should NEVER hand up their arms, whether in Turkey or America.


Flavio Rocha June 8, 2013 at 19:36

Stay strong Turkey. There are people all over the world supporting your fight.


gülay toksun June 10, 2013 at 01:21

thank you :(


Jacqui June 10, 2013 at 14:31

They say a picture paints a thousand words and this is true here!
I am saddened by the actions of an inhumane police force and a government that orders this to happen!
People like me in the UK stand with our sisters and brothers in Turkey, the old and the young and hope that the international community rise up together in solidarity together to protect the people of Turkey!
Stay strong!!!
jacqui lovell


Vanessa Katsoolis June 10, 2013 at 15:00

Stay strong Turkey. Prayers for you tonight from Australia.


chapulchu June 10, 2013 at 17:31
One of Many June 10, 2013 at 18:29
Wally D. June 10, 2013 at 20:36

Hand in there, brave Turkish youth! We support you wholeheartedly from across the big pond.


Richard June 11, 2013 at 08:45

Animals in Action !


Sheila June 11, 2013 at 18:50

We have to speak up!!! This is an atrocity!!! What a SHAME! Turkey and it’s most civil people are rising up for justice for the good of their country and it’s civilians.. This all started as a protest taken rightfully in a peaceful stance, not aggressive, nor provocative. They do NOT deserve to be lashed, beaten, terrorized and killed!…. Turkey is such a beautiful country, rich with culture and contemporary lifestyle. Todays generation is hip, rational and think alike with the rest of us good people in North America. They want nothing but peace, freedom of speech, culture, education and justice to serve everyone. I can’t believe how bad it’s getting, how the police is handling this is absolutely outrageous! This “battle” doesn’t match those in Arab states were the civilians are doing harm to each other and fighting the military with arms in protest. These turkish civilians know nothing of violence and want nothing to do with it!


Marco Behtash June 12, 2013 at 12:38

don’t give up. don’t give up. don’t give up.
kick their ass and dont give up.


baokte June 12, 2013 at 16:32



Alec Bogossian June 13, 2013 at 02:49

This should not be a surprise to the world–turkey has never cared for human rights, in the past 100 years they’ve slaughtered millions during the Armenian Genocide, Greek Genocide, and Assyrian Genocide. Nothing is different now…keep denying Mr. Obama


Mehmet ASLANAK June 16, 2013 at 14:58

Fundementalist government of Turkey is trying to create an islamic republic like in Iran, no voice against them.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan previously revealed that he hates israel, like Iran’s mollas.
Democracy is a path for him to the islamic state.
Some police who probably from an islamic sect, put a chemical, probably caustic soda, into tank of water cannon vehicles.
Some protesters have burnt skin.
Opposing media, who have no business contracts with government, named PM Tayyip Erdogan as “Chemical Tayyip” like Saddam’s aide.


Josh June 18, 2013 at 12:49

Turkey will never get into European Union now using such excessive violence. Definitely need to get rid of this government. Time for these photos to be analysed and the police ombudsman brought in to put police men/women in prison who have blatantly used excessive violence. When hundreds of police loose their jobs and spend time in prison, they won’t be long behaving like a modern police force in a modern country.


andras bertalan June 18, 2013 at 21:47

World is watching and will not forget murder motherfuckers!


Mirva July 12, 2013 at 00:51

So…….killing is okey if the law says so…………….? Wonder how the electric chair must feel like..


Susan July 27, 2013 at 16:06

I was going to say the police are animals, but animals are good. You keep up the good work and fight for what is right. Erdogan is a bastard and needs to be shown he is wrong. Ataturk will be turning in his grave. You are all in my heart x


HANS September 23, 2013 at 21:11



tribal enfekte May 15, 2014 at 20:21



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