The health problems of the prisoners on hunger strike gets worse whilst the massive hunger strike launched against the violations of rights in Turkish prisons and isolation of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan continues on to it’s 118th day.
Seyfettin Martı, a political prisoner in a High Security Closed Prison in Turkey’s eastern province of Van (Wan) is one of those hunger striking prisoners, who is also an ill-prisoner. Martı, who has been jailed since 2015, has “Familial Mediterranean Fever” (FMF). Turkish judicial authorities rejected the applications for Seyfettin Martı’s release.
Another ill-prisoner whose release has been rejected by the Turkish judiciary is Şemsettin Özer has been imprisoned for 27 years. He is jailed in Bafra Type-T Closed Prison in Turkey’s Black Sea province of Samsun and has been recently diagnosed with throat cancer.
He had a heart attack in prison
Sharing her concerns about her brother’s health with Mesopotamia Agency, Şengül Martı drew attention to the fact that her brother’s health condition worsened during the pandemic process.
If the prisoners demand to see a doctor in hospital, they are put in solitary confinement cells in the aftermath of their hospital visits, with the excuse of coronavirus quarantine measure. That is why Seyfettin Martı “will not accept a referral to a hospital as a protest against this heavy isolation penalty,” said Şengül Martı.
“My brother was taken to hospital many times before due to his severe health problems. He has a medical report. However, these reports are ignored. He had a heart attack after the FMF attacks he had a few months ago and was taken to hospital. We were not informed about his transfer to hospital,” she said.
Hunger strike despite illness
Ill-prisoner Seyfettin Martı launched a hunger strike as part of the ongoing hunger strikes in more than 150 prisons in Turkey. The reason for that, her sister underlined, is “the heavy violations of rights my brother and other prisoners are subjected to. They also protest against the isolation and demand the isolation be lifted,” Şengül Martı said.
‘Let this torture end’
The main demand of the family members of the ill-prisoners is the “release” of their sick relatives and obtaining “clear information” about the well-being of their loved ones, Şengül Martı shared.
“The prisoners are left to their own destiny in hunger and in darkness,” she said, “We demand to hold and embrace our brothers, sisters and loved ones in prisons. We want them to be released and treated medically. We want them to see beautiful days with peace. Let his torture end.”
Family of Özer: His condition gets worse
Özer, who is on the ill-prisoners list of Turkey’s Human Rights Association (IHD), was detained in Batman in 1995 and subsequently sentenced life imprisonment plus 5 years in prison on charges of “violating the unity and integrity of the country”.
During his 27 years of imprisonment Özer has been coping with many diseases such as ulcer, high blood pressure, migraines, and sinusitis.
The family of Şemsettin Özer shared information on his health with Mesopotamia Agency.
“He was diagnosed with cancer, but he has been kept in a quarantine ward due to the coronavirus pandemic for over a month. He has been all alone and he is not even able to wash his own clothes,” his family said.
‘He spent his life in jail and now he has cancer’
Özer’s family stated that Şemsettin Özer’s health condition “gets worse each day”. “We are more than simply concerned,” the family said, “We want his immediate release. He spent all his life in jail and now he has cancer. Release him and let us be with him during his cancer treatment.”
Özer also authored two books “The person who seeks himself with philosophy” and “The 7 days of my life” in prison.