A video footage showing the dead body of a man being dragged behind a police vehicle emerged on Sunday after the photos of the incident circulated in the social media and sparked wide public outcry.
The footage, published on the Karşı daily’s website, late on Sunday appears to show the body being dragged while police officers on the vehicle are heard swearing at the dead body. One is heard congratulating his colleague for killing the man.
According to media reports, the dead body was that of Hacı Lokman Birlik, the brother-in-law of pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Şırnak deputy Leyla Birlik. Hacı Lokman Birlik was killed on Friday in a clash between members of the terrorist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and Turkish security forces in Şırnak.
Sharing a photo of the incident on his Twitter account, HDP Co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş wrote on Sunday: “Look at this photo closely. It was taken the day before yesterday in Şırnak. Nobody should forget this and we will never forget it.”
The emergence of the footage comes to refute claims by pro-Justice and Development Party (AK Party) figures who argued earlier on Sunday that the photos were fabricated and that they were intentionally served to the media by PKK sympathizers to create a negative public perception about the AK Party government. However, the same figures claimed later the same day that the body had been tied to the police car in case the body was booby-trapped. The pro-government Akşam daily claimed on Sunday afternoon that dragging bodies in such a way was a “routine practice” that is performed across the world as a security precaution.