Family demands justice for 14-year-old boy killed by police in Cizre
İdris Emen CİZRE
Ümit Kurt, 14, was shot dead by police last week in the southeastern district of Cizre. DHA PhotoThe parents of a 14-year-old boy who was allegedly shot dead by police last week in the southeastern district of Cizre have vowed to pursue justice “in this world and the next,” demanding that their son’s killers be prosecuted.
“My son was working for 20 Turkish Liras [a day] for spending money. He never hurt anyone. As he was trying to earn his bread, he was shot in the heart and killed. I will pursue the killers in both worlds,” Abdullah Kurt, the father of Ümit Kurt, who was shot and killed on Jan. 6, told Radikal on Jan. 14, the same day another boy, Nihat Kazanhan, was shot dead by police in apparently similar circumstances in Cizre.
"I want the perpetrators to be found,” the father said.
Abdullah Kurt challenged claimsthat police were not responsible for his son’s death. “When my son was shot, there was nobody on the street except an armored personnel carrier. If they didn’t shoot him, who did?” he said.
The father, who had just returned from Antalya that day, said his son had already succumbed to his injuries by the time they arrived at the hospital after being informed about the attack.
“I saw my son’s face at the morgue, and I talked to the eyewitnesses,” he said. “My son was assisting a shoe-shiner on the street on which the incident occurred. He was earning 20 liras a day. When the street was quiet, Ümit told his boss that he was going to the washroom and headed out onto the road from a construction area. As soon as he stepped onto the road, he was shot in the heart.”
Abdullah Kurt said authorities refused to speak to him at the hospital, while also noting that the boy’s clothes had “gone missing” while there.
“I spoke to the prosecutor after the incident, telling him that the murderer of my son was the state. However, the investigation file that would shed light on the incident has been declared secret. The declaration of secrecy means absolving the perpetrators,” he said.
The boy’s mother, Nafiye Kurt, expressed her incomprehension at her son’s murder. “Because his father wasn’t able to work, Ümit started work three days beforehand with the aim of helping. I don’t understand how they killed my son. My son grew up in poverty, and he never hurt anyone; he didn’t even participate in protests,” she said.
“All the children who have been killed in these incidents are my children. As a mother, I want my son’s killers to be found,” she said.
The Şırnak Bar Association accused police of deliberately targeting and killing Kurt in a report released Jan. 13. “The fact that Ümit Kurt was shot in the heart when he was protecting himself between an electrical pole and a wall shows that [he] was targeted and shot,” it said.
Five other people have been killed in less than a month in violence in Cizre and the nearby district of Silopi.