A 16-year-old Turkish girl was buried alive by relatives in an “honour” killing punishment for talking to boys, the police say.

The girl, who has been identified only by initials MM, was found in a sitting position with her hands tied, in a two-metre hole dug under a chicken pen outside her home in Kahta, The Guardian reports.

Tip-off

Police made the discovery in December after a tip-off from an informant, who told the police she had been killed following a family “council” meeting.

The post-mortem examination revealed large amounts of soil in her lungs and stomach, indicating that she had been alive and conscious while being buried.

Her body showed no signs of bruising. The girl had previously been reported missing.

Her father and grandfather are said to have been arrested and held in custody pending trial. The girl’s mother was arrested, but released later.

Media reports said the father had told relatives he was unhappy that his daughter — one of nine children — had male friends. The grandfather is said to have beaten her for having relations with the opposite sex.

“Honour” killing debate

The episode is set to reopen the sensitive debate in Turkey about “honour” killings.

Official figures have indicated that more than 200 such killings take place each year, accounting for around half of all murders in Turkey.

More In: International | News