Two children sexually abused at state-run care facilities: CHP deputy
BURSA – Doğan News Agency
DHA photoChildren aged between three and seven years old were sexually abused at state-run care facilities known as “Sevgi Evleri” (“Care Houses”), a deputy from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has alleged during an address to parliament on May 12. The incident is the latest in a series of child sexual abuse cases which have been sending shockwaves across the country since reports of a teacher’s assaults on male children surfaced in March.
A CHP deputy from the northwestern province of Bursa, Erkan Aydın, claimed children aged between three and seven years were sexually assaulted in care facilities run by Turkey’s Family Ministry.
“I demand that the Family and Social Policies Ministry, the Bursa Governor’s Office and the Bursa police take action,” Aydın said, without providing details on the assault.
Officials speaking on condition of anonymity said the children in question were two males aged three and seven while the suspects were two 54-year-old employees, one who was reportedly a technician.
The suspects, identified as S.A. and Ş.P., were brought before a local court on May 12, where they rejected charges of “sexual abuse.” Both were released by the court pending trial. The court also issued a confidentiality order on the case.
Meanwhile, a delegation of CHP deputies, including the party’s deputy chairperson, Lale Karabıyık, went to Bursa to visit the care houses.
The deputies inspected the facilities and received information from officials, reiterating they would follow the legal proceedings closely.
“The matter is currently submitted to the jurisdiction. We will keep a close watch. We received information from ‘Sevgi Evler’i personnel. We wait for the clarification of the issue,” Aydın told members of the press, while Karabıyık said it was not correct to make a statement while the trial was ongoing.
“We will make a statement once the process is over,” she said.
Around 100 children are currently under protection at “Sevgi Evleri” facilities in Bursa. The facilities are examples of a fresh move by the ministry to modernize the child protection institution and provide a home-like setting for children. The houses allow children to live in villas instead of wards in groups of 10 to 12.