Women Relatives of Hunger Striking Inmates File Second Criminal Complaint Against Police

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  • May 22, 2019
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The women who were constantly battered and subjected to police violence while attempting to stand watch in front of Gebze Prison in Kocaeli for their relatives who are on a hunger strike in prison have filed a criminal complaint for the second time.

CLICK – Peace Mothers Beaten, Dragged Across Ground for Holding Demos on Hunger Strikes

In their first petition submitted to the Gebze Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office by the lawyers from Libertarian Legists’ Association (ÖHD), the women requested that the police officers who battered and insulted them on April 19 and 21 as well as the Governor of Kocaeli and Kocaeli Director of Security, “who gave the orders to the police”, be investigated and put on trial.

CLICK – Relatives of Convicts File Complaint Against Police After Violent Response to Demo

In that petition, the responsible parties were charged with “willful injury, torture, torment, ill treatment, physical coercion, excess of power in exercising the right to use force, insult, misconduct in public office, giving and executing unlawful orders, preventing the exercise of freedom of expression, preventing the exercise of political and union rights.”

They are in front of prison for days

The families who were battered and forced into police cars while they were trying to hold a protest demonstration in front of Gebze Type M Women’s Closed Prison were at the Gebze Courthouse yesterday (May 21).

As reported by Mezopotamya Agency (MA), the statement for the press to be made by lawyer Sinan Zincir from the ÖHD and Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Urfa MP Ayşe Sürücü was also prevented by the police.

What happened?

Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Hakkari MP and Democratic Society Congress (DTK) Co-Chair Leyla Güven went on a hunger strike on November 8, 2018 with the demand that the isolation imposed on Kurdistan Workers Party’s (PKK) imprisoned leader Abdullah Öcalan be ended.

On December 16, hundreds of inmates from more than 50 prisons across Turkey followed suit and went on a hunger strike. As of March 1, 2019, thousands of inmates have been on a hunger strike. Since then, eight inmates have claimed their own lives with the same demand. 30 people have also announced that they have gone on a death fast.

Öcalan was allowed to meet his lawyers on May 2 with the special permission of the Ministry of Justice after eight years. The details of this meeting as well as the message of Öcalan were shared with the public in a statement for the press held in İstanbul on May 6.

On May 16, Minister of Justice Abdulhamit Gül announced that the ban preventing Abdullah Öcalan from meeting his lawyers in İmralı Prison has been lifted. Gül stated that “the decisions regarding the meeting ban have been revoked and a meeting opportunity has been provided.”

Minister Gül also indicated that the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture inspected the İmralı Prison on May 7. However, no meeting between Öcalan and his lawyers has taken place since then. (AS/SD)