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Situation of political prisoners in Turkey

Situation of political prisoners in Turkey

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Recently, the rule of law has come under severe attack in Turkey.Thousands of academics, opposition party members, journalists have been detained or arrested arbitrarily.

Illegals practices and torture is reported by the several organisations as the Human Rights Association of Turkey (IHD), the Human Rights Foundation (HRFT) and the Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) of the European Council of Human Righsts.

There are too many suspicious deaths in Turkish prisons. Some of the prisoners have serious illnesses such as cancer and every year death occur because of lack of access to health services.According to the data of the Human Rights Association, the Free Lawyers Association and the Prisoner Families Association, there are a total of 1’605 sick political prisoners, 604 of whom are seriously ill.

The Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture stated in its August 2020 report, which examined conditions in the F-type high security prison on Imrali Island, that Ocalan’s detention conditions were inhumane.

Abdullah OCALAN is one of the prisoners sentenced to an aggravated prison term. He has been held alone in Imrali Island Prison since 16 February 1999. In March 2015, Hamili Yildirim, Omer Hayri Konar and Veysi Aktas, from other prisons, were transferred to his side. Abdullah Ocalan, after a short trial, was initially sentenced to death, later converted to aggravated life imprisonment.

He has not been allowed to meet his lawyers, except for a few trips since July 2011. Apart from lawyers, prisoners are also not allowed to meet their families. Abdullah Ocalan, last met his lawyers on 7 August 2019; and his family on 3 March 2020. The other three prisoners in Imrali are subject to the same practice.

Another specific practice in Imrali prison is to deny prisoners their rights to communicate, neither by letter nor by telephone. They cannot watch television, newspapers are not distributed regularly, and when they are, they are censored.

The situation is very worrying for political prisoners inTurkey and Turkey doesn’t act against the call of different international organisations.

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    Gianfranco Fattorini

    Former Co-president Mouvement contre le racisme et pour l'amitié entre les peuples

    Rezan Sarica

    Asrin Law Office / Turkey

    Rengin Ergul

    Lawyers For Freedom Association / Turkey

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