Several female political detainees at a prison in Patnos, a city in eastern Turkey’s Ağrı (Agiri) province, have come forward with allegations of torture inflicted by male prison guards.
According to the Mezopotamya Agency, the detainees, including Mizgin Kayıtbey, Lale Kabişen, and Nazlıcan Barışer, raised objections when male guards participated in a headcount on 31 August. They argued that men should not enter the area designated for their private lives. Their request to meet with a prosecutor was also denied, leaving them in a vulnerable position.
Approximately 40 prison guards confronted the protesting women, subjecting them to an agonising 40-minute ordeal of alleged torture. During the incident, the detainees were reportedly bound with hogtie restraints and confined to a waiting room for a gruelling four hours.
Following the incident, Mizgin, one of the victims, managed to make a phone call to her family, during which she described the torment she and her fellow detainees endured. However, her call was abruptly terminated.
It is also reported that disciplinary proceedings have been initiated against all the male prisoners who banged on the doors in protest at the assault on the female prisoners during the incident.
Providing a firsthand account, Seyhan Kayıtbey, the mother of Mizgin, revealed how their attempt to visit their daughter was thwarted when prison authorities, including the director and guards, falsely claimed they were late. Subsequently, Mizgin reached out to them and disclosed the appalling abuse they had suffered.
Seyhan’s account paints a grim picture of the prison environment. She stated, “In the past three months, they have received nine solitary confinement sentences, each accompanied by torture.” She accused the newly appointed prison director of being involved in acts of torture, harassment, and assault. “The prison has turned into a place of planned torture and brutality,” she added.
Seyhan called for immediate action, urging the public to stand up against this injustice, even suggesting sit-ins in front of the prison, the Ministry of Justice, or parliament if necessary. She emphasised the gravity of the situation, highlighting the daily death threats that inmates reportedly face and the repeated failure of petitions to the prosecutor to yield any response.