–        Date : 31 December, 2019 (Date of notification)

–        Location : Gaziantep/ TÜRKİYE

–        Perpetrator : Vakifbank

–        Victim : S.U.

–        Source :


–        FACTS

S.U. received an international wire transfer through a bank. The bank clerk informed S.U., who had gone to the bank branch to retrieve his/her funds, that s/he had a ‘Forbidden ID number’ alert. Since this alert issued with a statutory decree, the bank clerk stated that it is not possible to give that money to S.U.


According to article 122 of Turkish Penal Code, anyone who prevents a person from performing an ordinary economical activity due to hatred arising from differences in language, race, nationality, color, gender, disability, political opinion, philosophical belief, religion or sect shall be sentenced to imprisonment from one year to three years.

In the present case, S.U., who was dismissed from her/his duty by statutory decree, was prevented by Vakifbank from receiving the money transferred to her own account. The aforementioned obstacle was implemented on the grounds that the account holder S.U. was expelled by decree. The motive behind the The motive behind the bank’s non-payment political opinion of the account holder. As a matter of fact, S.U. was dismissed from his civil service with a decree that was issued for the expulsion of people who are members of the Gülen movement or who are alleged to be members of the movement. 

In conclusion, in the case, there is a hate and discrimination crime committed by the bank authorities.


According to the Office for Human Rights and Democratic Institutions (ODIHR) of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), a hate crime is a criminal act motivated by bias against a group. Hate crimes comprise two elements: a criminal offence and a bias motivation.

In regards to the aforementioned incident, it is alleged that the transaction involving the transfer of funds to the account of S.U. was impeded due to the assertion that said individual had been subjected to the issuance of a statutory decree. According to the definition of hate crime by ODIHR, there is a crime of discrimination motivated by hatred of S.U.’’s affiliation with the Gülen movement.


What is a Decree Law (KHK)?

On July 20, 2016, a State of Emergency (OHAL) was declared across Turkey. Under the State of Emergency, the government was authorized to issue emergency decrees.

The Justice and Development Party (AKP), led by President Erdoğan, accused the Gülen movement of instigating the alleged failed coup on July 15, 2016, and all these ordinary and extraordinary decrees were part of a broader hate campaign against the Gülen movement.

After July 2016, the government fired more than a hundred thousand people associated with the Gülen movement. Thousands of educational institutions were closed, more than a hundred media outlets were shut down and journalists arrested. More than a hundred people have died under torture. Dozens of people were kidnapped at home and abroad.

  Article 122 – (Amended on 2 March 2014 – By Article 15 of the Law no. 6529)

(1) Any person who

(a) Prevents the sale, transfer or rental of a movable or immovable property offered to the public,
(b) Prevents a person from enjoying services offered to the public,

(c) Prevents a person from being recruited for a job,
(d) Prevents a person from undertaking an ordinary economic activity

on the ground of hatred based on differences of language, race, nationality, colour, gender, disability, political view, philosophical belief, religion or sect shall be sentenced to a penalty of imprisonment for a term of one year to three years.