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Erdogan regime started executions in prisons after the elections

Zeki Güven, former Intelligence Staff Section Chief in Ankara, who carried out many important operations and witnessed the most critical periods of Turkey, was found dead in his cell while he was imprisoned in Sincan Prison.

According to the sources of the regime, Zeki Güven had died from a heart attack. And according to the pens of MIT (National Intelligence Agency), “he was executed by FETO, since he decided to be an informant”.

The media outlets, who describe themselves as left-wing libertarians, chose to announced the death of Zeki Güven by simply stating “he passed away before he had a chance to stand trial”. In fact, there is a serious scheme.


The prison turned into death houses during the Erdoğan regime. Zeki Güven was not the first, and probably he will not be the last neither. To say the least, as long as the lawlessness in bureaucracy, stolidity in media and society, and the apathy of the international institutions continue, we will continue to hear similar news. Whereas the safety of the prisoner while s/he is incarcerated is the responsibility of the state. Therefore, the death of a prisoner who is under surveillance by the state for 24 hours is suspicious all the way, and both the perpetrator and the responsible one is the state itself.

However, since the July 15th military coup attempt (speaking of which, let me remind you that July 15th is not a military coup attempt, it was an intelligence operation carried out personally by Erdoğan and his team), tens of people lost their lives in prisons.
Even though we do not have any tangible data about the death of Zeki Güven, the “actions” of the Erdoğan regime is more than enough for us to be suspicious.
Because from teachers to doctors, academicians to judges, tens of people lost their lives in prisons. Most them was not even made news.

No one remembers even their names. According to the records of Stockholm Center for Freedom, the list of the people who died since 15 July 2018 as follows:

• Halime Gülsu, teacher, 27 April 2018, Tarsus Prison
• Teoman Gökçe, high chancellor, hearth attack, 2 April 2018, Sincan Prison , Ankara
• Adnan Çetin, colonel, negligence, 16 February, 2018, Silivri Prison, İstanbul
• Ahmet Turan Özcerit, academician, cancer, 12 February 2018, Bandırma Prison, Balıkesir
• Vahyettin Yahya Bayat, businessman, heart attack, 9 February 2018, Diyarbakır Prison
• Lokman Ersoy, teacher, negligence, 8 January 2018, Kepsut Prison, Balıkesir
• Selman Aşçı, volunteer for “Is Anybody There?” charity, cancer, 27 December 2017, Şakran Prison, İzmir
• Yavuz Ekrem Arslan, brigadier general, negligence, 6 November 2017, Buca F-type Prison, İzmir
• Mustafa Erdoğan, high chancellor, prevent to receive treatment, 22 August 2017, Antalya Prison
• Ahmet Tatar, chief of police, heart attack, 3 August 2017, Osmaniye Prison
• Kamil Ülgüt, businessman, heart attack, 4 July 2017, Elbistan E-type Prison, Kahramanmaraş
• Recep Erdem, businessman, heart attack, 6 April 2017, Erzurum Prison.
• Kadir Eyce, police officer, cancer, 11 April 2017, Sivas E-Type Prison
• Ali Özer, doctor, heart attack, 23 March 2017, Çorum Prison
• Mehmet İnam, dentist, heart attack, 5 January 2017, Menemen Prison, İzmir
• Ünal Takmaklı, businessman, heart attack, 29 November 2016, Menemen T-type Prison, İzmir
• Kemal Kaya, cancer/negligence, 19 November 2016, Isparta Prison
• Behçet Emdi, teacher, suicide, 19 November 2016, T-type Prison, Karabük
• Burak Açıkalın, engineer, suicide, 8 November 2016, F-type Prison, Hacılar, Kırıkkale
• İrfan Kızılarslan, colonel, suicide, 5 November 2016, Çamlıbel T-type Prison, Tokat
• Fatih Korkmaz, teacher, cancer, 25 October 2016, Bartın Prison, Ankara
• Ahmet Ok, heart attack, 20 October 2016, Anamur T-type Prison
• Enver Şentürk, prison guard, suicide, 13 October 2016, E-type Prison, Adıyaman
• Seyfettin Yiğit, prosecutor, suicide, 16 August 2016, E-type Prison, Bursa
• Ömer Çubuklu, prison guard, suicide, 1 August 2016, F-type Prison No:2 , İzmir
• Mustafa Törer, businessman, heart attack, 28 August 2016, İskenderun Prison, Hatay
• İsmail Çakmak, lieutenant colonel, suicide, 23 August 2016, Silivri Prison, İstanbul
• Hasan Hayri Alp, businessman, heart attack, 19 August, 2016, Sincan F-Type Prison, Ankara

There might be different names which escaped my notice. In fact, this situation singlehandedly manages to demonstrate the characteristic features of the Erdoğan regime. Judges, soldiers, teachers, and police officers are dying in prisons throughout the country, but the media does not even make news about them. Human rights organizations, the bars, and the civil society organizations do not pursue such matters.


Prosecution Office in Ankara announced that Güven died of heart attack.
It was an excepted development. Because the same announcements were made about all of the suspicious deaths I listed above.

None of them received detailed autopsies from independent institutions.
Furthermore, the mentality of the party in power is to torture the civilians who are detained, and then let the world know about it through the Anadolu Agency. Under such atmosphere, which doctor could issue a medical report stating “died because of torture”?
Zeki Güven did not have a known medical condition.

According to his colleagues, he did not smoke, and took care of his health. The footage on television which showed him while he was being detained confirms this statement.

In other words, someone, who went to prison in perfect health, dying in prison because of a “heart attack” right before his hearing is a suspicious situation all by itself.


Zeki Güven was not a stranger before the public. The media of the party in power represented him as the “Golden boy of the Cemaat” and “black box”. Hanefi Avcı, a former police commissioner, referred Zeki Güven as a critical name both in his books and newspaper statements, and virtually made him a target by saying “if he is interrogated well and starts speaking”.

The statement “I hope he is interrogated well” of Hanefi Avcı, who was once a main topic in the media because of torture accusations, is important.

Because, the mentality, which owns today’s security bureaucracy, is the famous staff for tortures and executions during 1990s. Considering the fact that these people even killed a teacher like Gökhan Açıkkollu by torture, it is not improbable for them to kill somebody by torture like Zeki Güven, who is “a name who knows a lot of things”.

Besides, it was a known fact that Zeki Güven has been under solitary confinement for 40 days, he was under heavy pressure to turn informant, and he was pushed to sign the “ready-made” record of testimony.


According to the partisan media, and the newspapers which identify themselves as being “independent, objective media” but has no differences than the partisan media, Güven was the key person who was in the center of the videotape conspiracies against the members of MHP (Nationalist Movement Party), and a lot of other “dirt operations”.

Unfortunately, since the Erdoğan regime did not leave any journalists in the country, and already killed the journalism mentally, nobody even felt necessary to make a research about what really happened.

It is true that Zeki Güven was standing trial in the videotape conspiracy case against Deniz Baykal. However, when you have a look at the bill of indictment in the 14th High Criminal Court in Ankara, you will see that Güven is being accused for different charges.
The accusations against Güven are mostly about Ergenekon. On the other hand, Baykal, as the complainant, did not mention Güven’s name ever.

The videotape conspiracy case against Baykal is an empty one.
In accordance with the changing conjuncture, many police captains, who were the target of the party in power, were added to the case file. Güven is one of them.

According to the statement of his colleagues, his only knowledge about the Baykal case is because he was on active duty in Ankara. Again, according to the statement of his colleagues, he had knowledge not only about the Baykal case, but also about many corruptions and immoral relationships of the party in power.

The discomfort around the party in power increased after he made statements, which blamed Erdoğan directly, when he was being detained. Briefly, it was enough to make not only Erdoğan, but also a lot of others in Ankara lose their sleep, with the possibility of him start talking in court, and sharing the details about the byzantine machinations in Ankara.


In fact, considering Zeki Güven’s background, it is quite visible that not only the political will is uneasy about him. After he graduated at the top of his class from the police academy, Güven had started working in the terrorism and intelligence units in Ankara, and was present in many critical operations.

Especially in 2001, he was among the ones who led the operations against Hezbollah.
Furthermore, he was the police captain who had reported the infamous wiretapping scandal back in 2002. Speaking of which, let me remind you: The actors of that scandal were the favorite bureaucrats of the Erdoğan regime. Osman Ak is Police Commissioner in Bursa, Mahmut Çorumlu is Police Commissioner in Kırıkkale, and Mehmet Aslan is Police Commissioner in Erzurum nowadays. These names were arrested during the wiretapping scandal and was released thanks to the “Rahşan amnesty”.

He was among the ones who knew very well about the corruptions and bribery networks which encircled Ankara. Especially he played a big role in the Al Qaeda and Ergenekon Operations.

In other words, “the coalition of people who would be happy to see Güven get arrested, put into a cell, and killed by torture” is formed by a large crowd consists of the supporters of 28th February, Ergenekon, the Palace, and the entourage of AKP.

Let’s get back to the beginning now, and ask the main question. After all of these details, isn’t it suspicious for Zeki Güven to be found dead in his cell, and the fact that they want to close the subject by giving the “heart attack” reason just like they did for the others?


The suspicious death of Zeki Güven is an evidence, which means the other constables and members of the judiciary who are holding similar positions are at risk. Because, together with Güven, there are hundreds of constables and members of the judiciary who are incarcerated in the prisons of Sincan and Silivri.

Police commissioners such as Yurt Atayün and Lokman Kırcılı became a target because they had appointed to critical missions in the Ergenekon operations, and information is being received that they are being severely tortured.

According to the information reflected to social media, especially Lokman Kırcılı is suffering intensive torture. Recep Güven had also worked for intelligence in Ankara, just like Lokman Kırcılı, and he is a police commissioner who has confidential information about the capital city.

It was a known fact in Ankara that Erdoğan worked with these police commissioners closely, and skipped Beşir Atalay, the then Minister of Internal Affairs, and gave them direct instructions.

It was being mentioned in the backstage of the politics that Beşir Atalay, the former Minister of Internal Affairs, was complaining about these situation.

Furthermore, Erdoğan had trusted these individuals so much, he was even telling them to make background checks for the men who wanted to marry his daughter, Sümeyye.


If one of the characteristics of the operations against the Cemaat is torture, the other one must be “absence of evidences”. The operations are ongoing 24/7 nearly for 5 years. There is nobody left who was not detained or arrested, and yet there is no evidence which supports the allegation of the presence of a terror organization.

The evidences which exist can only be in the scope of “dereliction of duty” allegations.
Under these circumstances, the Erdoğan regime and the extensions of Ergenekon in the bureaucracy are forcing people to be informants and sign the ready-made testimonies, by severely torturing them.

As a matter of fact, the courthouses are full of such testimonies. The defendants are stating that they were tortured during the interrogation process, they were forced to sign testimonies, and to be informants, and thus they reject their first testimonies. There are allegations about Zeki Güven being severely tortured to make him testify like “the Ergenekon operations to be fictions”. The experiences gained until now requires to take these allegations seriously.


Unfortunately, even the suspicious death of Zeki Güven couldn’t manage to create sensibility towards public opinion. An individual who had many critical information, and would have been able to open the curtain of mystery in case he had talked, suffers a heart attack right before his hearing, but the human rights organizations, bars, and the media show no interest about the incident.

There is no word from the institutions such as Europe Prevention of Torture Committee or the Helsinki Commission, which had sent a committee to Turkey to check the allegations of “Öcalan’s hair was cut by force”. The politics institution is busy buying the “FETO” cliché which Erdoğan never stops talking about.

The lives of many judges, police, prosecutors, academicians, and soldiers are in the hands of the doctors who are ready to issue a “heart attack” report. Güven had tweeted the last time back in 25 February 2015, where he wrote “yesterday our jobs, today our freedom is taken away from us, and only our lives are remaining”

Today, they have taken that too. If the journalists, civil rights organizations, academicians, doctors, and the bars in this country, shortly, the people who have responsibilities continue with their silence towards the tortures and executions, we are going to make more news with the title “somebody had a heart attack in prison” throughout Erdogan regime.

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Adem Yavuz Arslan
Adem Yavuz Arslan
Adem Yavuz Aslan is a leading Turkish investigative journalist in exile based in Washington, D.C.

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