Women’s organizations demand release of sick Kurdish politician and detainee Aysel Tuğluk
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68 women’s organizations issued a joint statement on the deteriorating state of health of former People’s Democratic Party (HDP) MP Aysel TuÄluk, detained at Kocaeli Prison.
In a statement released by his lawyers a few days ago, it was pointed out that Aysel TuÄluk, who has been behind bars since 2016, suffers from memory loss and cannot carry out his daily activities on his own.
Istanbul’s Forensic Medicine Institution in mid-September said “she can stay in jail” for the jailed politician. The report from the Kocaeli Medical Institution stated that “she could not stay in prison”. The requests for the release of his lawyers are repeatedly rejected.
In this context, 68 women’s rights organizations issued a written statement today (December 21) and declared: “It is time to show solidarity with Aysel TuÄluk”, stressing that “the administrative and judicial authorities who have ignored the announcement that “she cannot stay in prison ‘will be responsible for any adverse consequences regarding TuÄluk’s health.”
The organizations also urged the authorities to release TuÄluk so that his treatment can continue under the necessary conditions.
The full statement is as follows:
“Act in accordance with the law, science, conscience”
âOne of the Kurdish politicians imprisoned in the F-type prison of Kocaeli No. 1 since December 2016 is Aysel TuÄluk.
âAysel TuÄluk is the first woman to have co-chaired a political party in the history of Kurdish political parties and the only woman to have been politically banned because she was banned from politics after the closure of the Democratic Society Party. She is also a lawyer, human rights defender and politician who has dedicated her whole life to the Kurds’ struggle for freedom and equality which will lead to an honorable peace.
“Her efforts, her struggle and her position in the life to which she has devoted have deeply marked our recent political history.
“As everyone knows, she witnessed the racist assault on her mother’s funeral and this inhuman attitude, which left irreparable damage to her memory. Going into her treatment and medical examination for months, the Forensic Medicine Institution of Kocaeli Faculty of Medicine unanimously drafted a report stating that she was not fit to remain in prison; despite this report, a new report released by the Forensic Medicine Institute of Istanbul indicated exactly the opposite.
“This institution, which has long imposed itself with its reports in violation of ethics, conscience, science and law, has issued another of its reports against the science of medicine and consistently concluding that prisoners politicians âmay remain in prisonâ despite their serious and terminal illnesses. In this report given for TuÄluk, the illness of dementia was denied.
âThe appeal of his lawyers before theâ Supreme Council âagainst the contradictory reports went unanswered; the worsening of his illness is monitored.
âWe oppose what Aysel TuÄluk, as a politician who fought all types of violence against women for years and fought for women’s freedom, is forced to go through today; we ask for his release. In light of our demand for âJustice for Womenâ, we also reiterate our demand for freedom for TuÄluk and all women imprisoned for political reasons like her.
âThe state, mainly the Ministry of Justice, is responsible for failing to comply with the requirements of the full committee report stating that Aysel TuÄluk cannot stay in prison. Administrative and judicial authorities who ignore the report “she cannot stay in prison” will be responsible for any adverse consequences regarding TuÄluk’s health. “
âWe call on all authorities who have a role in this illegal process imposed on them to act in accordance with the law, science and conscience; let us recall that TuÄluk must be released as soon as possible so that her treatment can continue under the necessary conditions and reiterate our call for SOLIDARITY “.
The 68 undersigned organizations
Adalar Foundation Women’s Working Group, Adana Women’s Platform, AÄ-DA Gender Equality Solidarity Network, Alevi Women’s Union, Anatolian Women’s Movement, Women of the Academy of Ankara Solidarity (ADA), Ankara Women’s Platform, Antalya Women’s Counseling Center and Solidarity Association, AramÄ±zda (Entre Nous) Gender Studies Association, European Union of Alevi Women, Ben Association SeÃ§erim (I choose), Association for the fight against sexual violence, DatÃ§a Women’s Platform, DAD Women’s Assembly, State Association of Solidarity Women (DAKAHDER), Demir Leblebi Women’s Association, Alevi Democratic Associations Women’s Assembly, Democratic Union Alevi Women, Dikili Women’s Platform, DiyarbakÄ±r Bar Association Women’s Rights Center, Ekmek ve GÃ¼l Magazine, Labor Party Women, EskiÅehir School Research and Solidarity Association Gender Working Group, Monitoring for Equality Women’s Group-EÅÄ°TÄ°Z, Home- Union of Based Employees, FoÃ§a Peace Women, GÃ¼nebakan Women’s Association, Halkevci Women, Hatay Women Are Strong Together, People’s Democratic Congress (HDK) Assembly MuÄla Women’s Council, HDP Adana Women’s Council, HDP BalÄ±kesir Women’s Council, HDP Hatay Women’s Council, Hubyar Women’s Council, Ä°skenderun Women’s Platform, Izmir Women’s Solidarity Association, Women’s Solidarity, Party of Women, Women’s Human Rights – Association of New Solutions, Association of Women Writers, KadÄ±nlar Birlikte GÃ¼Ã§lÃ¼ (Women are Strong Together), KaÄÄ±thane HDP Women’s Organization, Karaburun Women’s Platform, Association for Counseling and Solidarity of women of Katre, Women’s Assembly of Public Employees’ Unions (KESK), Women’s Assembly of KÄ±rkyama Solidarity, Association KÄ±rmÄ±zÄ± Biber (red pepper), Solidarity of independent women of KÃ¶rfez, MavigÃ¶l Women’s Association, Mersin Alevi Women’s Platform, Mimoza – Mersin Women’s Association, Violet Solidarity, Mor SarmaÅÄ±k, MuÄla Emek Benim (The work is mine) Women’s Association Solidarity, MuÄla Women’s and Consultation Association, Lawyers’ Association for Freedom Women’s Commission, L Iberian Democratic Lawyers (ÃDAV), Rosa Women’s Association, SES Women’s Platform for Equality and Justice, Socialist Women’s Assemblies, Women with TÄ°P, Free Women’s Movement TJA (Tevgera JinÃªn Azad), Turkish Medical Association (TTB) Directorate of Women’s Medicine and Women’s Health, Van Women’s Platform, Van Star Women’s Association, Wernicke Korsakofflular and Former Prisoners / Ãukurova, Yan Yana (Side by Side) Initiative Women, YaÅamevi (Life House) Association for the solidarity of women.
On December 29, 2016, while she was vice-co-chair of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), Kurdish politician Aysel TuÄluk was arrested along with seven other politicians from the Party of Democratic Regions (DBP) and the Congress of Democratic Society ( DTK).
The indictment filed against TuÄluk, who was DTK’s co-chair until September 2014, brought her statements to the press as well as the funeral she attended as criminal evidence against the politician.
On March 16, 2018, the 17th Ankara Criminal Court sentenced Aysel TuÄluk to 8 years in prison in accordance with Anti-Terrorism Law (TMK) no. 3713. Halving this prison sentence, the court then sentenced the politician to 12 years in prison. Finally, she reduced that prison sentence by one sixth and decided that she would be sentenced to 10 years in prison.
As Aysel TuÄluk’s appeal to the Ankara Regional Court of Justice was dismissed, his case was referred to the Court of Cassation.
The funeral of his mother
Aysel TuÄluk’s mother, Hatun TuÄluk, lost her life in 2017. On her last wish, her deceased body was brought to Ä°ncek cemetery in Ankara. Aysel TuÄluk left prison with permission and his mother was buried; Soon after, a group of 5-6 people gathered to protest the funeral.
Those who attended the funeral said that number was gradually increasing and they were attempting to attack the grave.
As the attacks continued, Hatun TuÄluk’s deceased body had to be removed from the ground and buried elsewhere. One of the people who attacked the funeral turned out to have a photo with Interior Minister SÃ¼leyman Soylu at the police station.
Aysel TuÄluk’s older brother Alaattin TuÄluk said his sister lost her memory after the death of their mother:
My sister didn’t look well. She asks the same question 3 to 4 times. She doesn’t remember some things. For example, when she wants to ask about someone in the family, she says, âWho was that, who? They are close people, it is impossible for him not to know them. I’m afraid this will come to an irreversible point and we will lose my sister … I want treatment before it’s too late. Let another committee look at it and make a decision on it. She is now receiving 1 to 2 medications. It is not enough. She will go [to jail] after the end of his treatment.
About Aysel TuÄluk
She was a founding member and co-chair of the Democratic Society Party (DTP) and elected Member of Parliament for DiyarbakÄ±r in 2007-2009. She became MP for Van of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) in 2011-2015. She was HDP vice-co-chair responsible for law and human rights.
Aysel TuÄluk was also a board member of the Society and Law Studies Foundation, a member of the Human Rights Association (Ä°HD) and founder of the Association of Patriotic Women.
Born in ElazÄ±Ä in 1965, she graduated from Istanbul University Law Faculty and worked as a freelance lawyer. (TP / SD)