4 people trying to escape persecution in Turkey missing after boat capsizes in Evros River

The news outlet identified the missing as 36-year-old Hatice Akçabay and her three sons, seven-year-old Ahmet Esat, five-year-old Mesut and one-year-old Aras.
The news outlet identified the missing as 36-year-old Hatice Akçabay and her three sons, seven-year-old Ahmet Esat, five-year-old Mesut and one-year-old Aras.


Date posted: July 20, 2018

A woman and her three children went missing after a boat carrying several Turkish asylum seekers who fled Turkey due to an ongoing government crackdown on followers of the Gülen movement capsized in the Evros River along the Turkey-Greece border on Wednesday night, Euronews Turkish reported.

The news outlet identified the missing as 36-year-old Hatice Akçabay and her three sons, seven-year-old Ahmet Esat, five-year-old Mesut and one-year-old Aras.

The children’s father, Murat Akçabay, and four other people on the boat were rescued. Greek officials told Euronews they are being kept at a police station on the Turkish border.

Rescue teams from Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Agency (AFAD) were reportedly working to save the woman and her three children on the Turkish part of the river.

News of the incident was first tweeted by Turkish journalist Cevheri Güven, who called on international organizations to take action to rescue the missing people.

“A boat carrying Turkish purge victims capsized on the Evros River in Greece, a mother and 3 children lost, one child was wearing a life vest, they all may be alive, rescue units must urgently be deployed to the area @UNHCRGreece @Refugees_Gr,” Güven tweeted early Thursday.

Writer Cemil Tokpınar claimed the same day that Greek border police had located the missing people on an islet in the river.

Murat Akçabay, who was in custody at the Isakio station in Dimetoka, told Turkish media outlet Bold TV what they experienced in the Evros River early Thursday morning. “We, nine refugees, got in a rubber dinghy. At last two human traffickers also got in. In total we were 11 people on the boat. I think we crashed into something like a rock in the middle of the river. The boat was pierced and we started to turn it around. Suddenly the boat overturned and we all fell into the water. The other family members held on to tree branches on the right bank of the river.”

“My wife and I left in the middle of the river while trying to hold our children. My wife was holding our little baby, and I tried to hold our two sons. Ahmet Esat , our 7-year-old son, was wearing life vest so he could swim. But my other son went under the water. At the time my wife went adrift and then held on to a branch. I shouted to her, ‘Don’t let go of the branch, I will rescue you.’ While I was trying to fight the waves, I saw she wasn’t in the same place. I repeatedly shouted, but I never heard her voice again.”

Turkish police also reportedly detained Yunus Akçabay, the uncle of the missing children, as he tried to locate his lost nephews and their mother. No accusations against him were made by police, who said he had helped them search for and rescue his nephews and sister-in-law.

Thousands of people have fled Turkey due to a massive witch-hunt launched by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government against sympathizers of the Gülen movement in the wake of a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016. The government accuses the movement of masterminding the coup while the latter denies involvement.

More than 150,000 people have been detained and some 80,000 including academics, judges, doctors, teachers, lawyers, students, policemen and many from different backgrounds have been put in pre-trial detention since the failed putsch.

Many tried to flee Turkey via illegal means as the government cancelled the passports of thousands of people.

On Feb. 13, at least three people died and five others went missing after another boat carrying a group of eight capsized in the Evros River while seeking to escape the post-coup crackdown in Turkey.

 

Source: Stockholm Center for Freedom , July 19, 2018


Related News

US-based think tank says Gülen movement progressive in terms of pro-Kurdish reforms

A US-based think tank has released a report stating that the Gülen (Hizmet) movement, a grassroots civil society organization that has frequently accused government officials of obstructing the settlement negotiations between the government and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), has a progressive attitude regarding pro-Kurdish reforms.

Turkish-Americans in Tennessee worry about their homeland

If you haven’t heard much about the Turkish-American community in middle Tennessee, its no surprise. Now they feel compelled to talk about bridges that are in danger. They are worried about their own country and its failing democracy.

Arınç says Gülen’s offer to hand over prep schools ‘sacrifice’

Turkish Deputy PM Bülent Arınç has described the offer of Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen to hand over prep school management to the state an example of “sacrifice” and promised that the issue of prep schools will be resolved in a way that pleases everyone. “God knows that we don’t have an ambition to manage [these prep schools]; our desire is that these services don’t become the causalities of a disagreement,” Gülen reportedly said.

Zaman launches satirical magazine, defying pressure with humor

The Zaman daily, which has been under intense government pressure that culminated recently with the detention of its editor-in-chief in a government-backed operation on Dec. 14, 2014, is launching a satirical magazine Monday, in an apparent move to respond to the pressure with humor.

Gülen appeals for steadfastness against gov’t ban on prep schools [in Turkey]

Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen has asked his followers to be resolute and not yield to despair in the face of a government attempt to shut down private educational institutions [in Turkey] that assist students to prepare for high school and university admission examinations, which was interpreted as a major blow to the right to an education and to free enterprise in the EU-candidate country.

Turkish Islamic scholar Gülen loses 72-year-old brother

Seyfullah Gülen, the brother of leading Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, died at the age of 72 on Friday morning at the private Şifa Hospital in Erzurum, where he had been receiving treatment after a heart attack.

Latest News

Fethullah Gülen’s Condolence Message for South African Human Rights Defender Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Hizmet Movement Declares Core Values with Unified Voice

Ankara systematically tortures supporters of Gülen movement, Kurds, Turkey Tribunal rapporteurs say

Erdogan possessed by Pharaoh, Herod, Hitler spirits?

Devious Use of International Organizations to Persecute Dissidents Abroad: The Erdogan Case

A “Controlled Coup”: Erdogan’s Contribution to the Autocrats’ Playbook

Why is Turkey’s Erdogan persecuting the Gulen movement?

Purge-victim man sent back to prison over Gulen links despite stage 4 cancer diagnosis

University refuses admission to woman jailed over Gülen links

In Case You Missed It

Imam Sytari praises Gulen as a global thinker

27th Abant Final Declaration on Democratization of Turkey

To Turkey and Back!

Gülen sees peace wherever Huntington sees clash

Hizmet and the interfaith movement

Embrace Relief Worldwide Qurban (Feast of Sacrifice) Campaign

When Iconic Islamic scholar wins prestigious peace award

Copyright 2024 Hizmet News