Amnesty International Wednesday condemned Turkey for its "appalling human rights records," saying it has received almost daily reports since November of political prisoners being tortured.
The London-based rights organization says in a report released Wednesday that the Turkish government has begun a public relations campaign to improve its image abroad, but has taken no substantial steps to end the torturing of political detainees.Amnesty said 250,000 political prisoners have been detained in Turkey this decade, and "almost all of them were tortured."
Thousands were imprisoned for non-violent political or religious activities, 60,000 were convicted after unfair trials, more than 700 death sentences were imposed and at least 200 prisoners died in custody, many alleged to be the result of torture, the organization said.
Amnesty said it sent urgent appeals to the Turkish government in November and December, but it said Turkey has made no apparent effort to change the "brutal reality of torture, deaths in custody, political imprisonment and unfair trials."
The group said that six months ago it gave Turkish authorities the names of 229 men and women who had died in custody in the preceding 71/2 years, but "the authorities have provided no explanation whatsoever for 144 of the deaths."