The case of Devrim Ayık is instructive. Ayık is currently imprisoned in Eskişehir Type-H Closed Prison and suffers from Crohn’s disease. He is a political prisoner, who was working as a media worker in Free People’s Magazine before he was jailed.
During a weekly phone call, he described the mistreatment he suffered from during a transfer to hospital on 3 May, when he was taken for a medical check. “I was handcuffed as I was transferred to hospital. And I remained handcuffed till the evening”, he said. “To go to a hospital and come back to prison has turned into a process of torture for all of us”, he added.
Ayık stated that he needs to regularly visit a committee of doctors for a routine health check due to his serious health condition, but in each weekly visit, he states that he is treated in the same inhumane way.
“When we applied to the prosecutor regarding the mistreatment my client was subjected to, they closed the case even without any further investigation”, Kasım Sağlam, the lawyer of Ayık, confirmed.
Another prisoner, Yusuf Boz, was jailed after the curfews that were declared in 2015 in the Sur district of Turkey’s Kurdish majority province of Diyarbakır (Amed). He received injuries in both eyes and lost sight of his left eye two years ago in prison and uses an ocular prosthesis now.
His mother, Meymenet Boz, shared her concern that her son cannot receive the necessary treatment in prison to care for his remaining eye, which still needs urgent treatment.
“During his last phone call, he said that he was taken to hospital. The doctor told him he still has a piece of shrapnel in his eye and they would remove the piece once the medical papers were completed. However, the doctor then told him: ‘You have nothing in your eye’. So, my son cannot receive appropriate and necessary treatment and we do not want him to lose sight from his remaining eye”, she said.
Meymenet Boz’s mother also spoke about the ongoing hunger strike in Turkey’s prisons which has reached its 161st day. “Our responsibility is to stand behind our imprisoned children. We have to be the voice of the prisoners”, she said.