‘Barbarian’ Turkish police strip earthquake looters and beat them with belt

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    Turkish police have come under fire for barbaric behaviour after arrests of people looting in the wake of the huge earthquake that has killed thousands.

    In unverified footage circulated on Twitter, men thought to be police officers are seen beating arrested men with belts.

    Two of the apprehended men are dressed only in their underwear while another is dressed only from the waist down as a cop thrashes them repeatedly with a belt.

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    The three men scream in pain as they plead for the horrific beating to stop. Online commentators called the police "barbarians".

    The earthquake in Turkey has led to some local residents resorting to robbing shops with many cut off from key supplies.

    The video was posted by aggregate news site Noel reports which wrote: "The earthquake in Turkey has caused local residents to try to rob shops in the absence of local authorities and police.

    "The police, who then arrest those residents, mercilessly punish them in medieval ways by beating them with a belt."

    Turkey is reeling from one of the largest earthquake's in recent memory which happened on Monday (February 6).

    The death doll has surpassed 28,000 as people continue to search for survivors.

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    Clashes in some areas between groups have been reported as tensions rise amid dwindling food supplies.

    Turkey's president Recep Erdoğan said he would use emergency powers to punish anyone breaking the law

    Turkish media reported yesterday (February 11) that 48 people had been arrested for looting with some found to be armed with guns.

    A 26-year-old man searching for a work colleague in a collapsed building in Antakya told Reuters news agency: "People were smashing the windows and fences of shops and cars."

    Meanwhile an spokesperson from the Austrian army which is helping to deliver supplies said early on Saturday that clashes between groups in the Hatay province volunteers for the Austrian Forces Disaster Relief Unit to seek shelter in a base camp.

    Erdogan has pledged harsh punishments for people engaging in criminality in the affected areas.

    "The people who are involved in looting or kidnapping should know that the state's firm hand is on their backs," he said.

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