Turkey trying to evade responsibility for brothers killed by armoured police vehicle, says lawmaker

Muhammed Yildirim and his brother Furkan were killed as they were sleeping after a police armoured vehicle rammed in through their bedroom wall in Silopi, Sirnak.

Turkey’s opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker, Sezgin Tanrikulu, has accused state officials of trying to evade responsibility for the killing of two brothers by an armoured police vehicle.

Muhammed Yildirim, 7, and his 6-year-old brother Furkan were sleeping when an armoured vehicle rammed into the wall of their bedroom, killing both instantly on Wednesday.

The incident took place in southeastern Kurdish Sirnak’s Silopi district in the late hours of the evening, where according to local witnesses the police officers driving the vehicle were drunk.

“The killing of two children as they were sleeping in their beds should have unsettled the whole country, however the silence of the president and other top officials has unfortunately meant that it has been evaded as a common incident,” Tanrikulu said, adding that those responsible needed to be punished in the harshest way.

Visiting the children’s family to share his condolences, the Kurdish lawmaker and lawyer, promised to follow up on the case.

The governor of Sirnak, Ali Ihsan Su, visiting the family and mourners to share his condolences on Thursday morning, described the incident as “fate”, attracting ire amongst the mourners.

It is not known whether the officers responsible have been arrested.

Speaking to Al-Monitor Nusirevan Elci, the president of the Sirnak bar association, “Impunity is not limited to political cases; it’s across the board and justice is rarely delivered if at all.”

The local governorate has denied that the driver of the armoured vehicle was drunk and said an investigation had been launched into the incident.