Disciplinary Probe Launched Against Inmates for Hunger Strike in Turkish Prison

by Ella

A disciplinary investigation has been initiated against 39 female inmates in a prison in Ankara province, Turkey, after they staged a three-day hunger strike to protest the death of a sick prisoner. The protest, which took place at Sincan Prison, a facility known for housing political prisoners, aimed to draw attention to the situation of sick inmates in Turkish prisons.

The inmates began their hunger strike following the death of 70-year-old cancer patient Şakir Turan, who died while incarcerated in Erzincan prison. Before starting the protest, the inmates had submitted petitions to prison authorities, informing them of their intention to refuse meals for three days. They also sent petitions to the Ministry of Justice and the parliament, emphasizing their goal of raising awareness about the plight of sick prisoners in Turkey.


In recent years, Turkish authorities have faced criticism for denying release to ailing prisoners, especially those involved in politically charged trials. Many prisoners have passed away while in custody or shortly after their belated release, often during the advanced stages of their illnesses.


Reports on prison conditions in Turkey have revealed systematic neglect regarding prisoners’ health issues. This includes instances of denied hospital referrals, failure to provide prescribed medication, and neglecting to deliver specialized meals recommended by doctors.


Turkey’s prisons are notorious for their overcrowding and unhygienic conditions. According to a Council of Europe report from 2020, Turkey had the highest incarceration rate among member states, with 357 prisoners per 100,000 inhabitants. The report also highlighted the country’s prisons as the most overcrowded in Europe, with 127 inmates for every 100 available places as of January 2020.




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