prison conditions

Seriously ill educator still held in Manisa prison for 22 months

Isa Kara, 54-year-old, has worked 34 years as a teacher and director of Ministry of National Education’s Manisa provincial directorate. He was fired from his job with a decree issued by the Turkish government after the alleged coup attempt in July 2016.

Kara was imprisoned in October 2016 on coup charges. Despite his illnesses, he was held in pre-trial detention for 29 days and later transferred to Manisa prison. Kara is partly paralyzed and suffers from serious heart problems. Kara’s doctor had indicated that he needs to stay away from stress due to his heart problem. In an e-mail, it is claimed that two months before he was put in pre-trial detention, he had his first Angiogram. On April 12, 2018, he was transferred by the prison management to İzmir Katip Çelebi University Hospital where he had his second Angiogram. After spending 45 days in the hospital, he was sent back to İzmir Buca F Type Prison.

Kara’s family submitted 15 requests for the release of Isa Kara due to his health condition, however, all of them were rejected. The prison conditions are not satisfactory for the well-being of Kara. The prisons are overcrowded and are not sanitary for such a seriously ill patient. Kara’s doctor has noted numerous times that Isa Kara is not receiving proper treatment under current prison conditions.

Mr. Kara is being accused of membership in the Gülen movement, accused by the Turkish government of masterminding a coup attempt on July 15, 2016. The movement denies any involvement, and the Turkish government has rejected parliamentary motion to investigate the coup. Right after the coup, without any just hearing, the Turkish government initiated a widespread purge against the sympathizers of the movement.

There have been many cases of suicide and death in prison, some of which were found to be suspicious, of people who have been affected by the purge of Gülen movement followers. Isa Kara’s family is in the apprehension of severe worries about his health condition as they reminisced about the victims who died for they were not given proper and necessary treatment and were supposed to be given parole due to fatal conditions in jail.

For more detailed information about the prison conditions in Turkey, please take a look at the report prepared by Platform for Peace & Justice titled “A Comprehensive Report on the Prison Conditions in Turkey”.

Download the report as pdf: http://www.platformpj.org/wp-content/uploads/IN-PRISON-2017.pdf

We urge international bodies and human rights organizations to take all necessary steps to request for pending trial to be taken into consideration due to Isa Kara’s health condition mentioned above.

We urge everyone to take action. Express your views or send attached statement below to following relevant individuals and organizations.

Download sample statement as a word document: AST_letter_Isa Kara

1) U.S. Department of State
Email: https://register.state.gov/contactus/contactusform
Phone: (202) 647-6575
Twitter: @StateDept
Website: https://www.state.gov/

2) United Nations Human Rights Council (UN HRC)
Email: civilsociety@ohchr.org
Phone: (+41) 22 917 9656
Twitter: @UN_HRC
Website: www.ohchr.org/hrc

3) Human Rights Watch
Twitter: @hrw
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HumanRightsWatch
NY Address:350 Fifth Avenue, 34th floor New York, NY 10118-3299 USA
Tel: +1-212-290-4700
Fax: +1-212-736-1300

Emma Daly, Communications Director
Tel: +1-212-216-1835
Fax: +1-212-736-1300

4) Human Rights Foundation
Twitter: @HRF
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/humanrightsfoundation/
New York Address:350 5th Ave., #4515 New York, NY, 10001
Phone Number: (212) 246-8486

5) Freedom House
Twitter: @FreedomHouseDC
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FreedomHouseDC
Phone: 202-296-5101
Fax: 202-293-2840

Annie Boyajian, Advocacy Manager

6) Amnesty International
Twitter: @amnestyusa
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amnestyusa

7) International Federation for Houman Rights
Twitter: @fidh_en
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FIDH.HumanRights
110 East 42nd street, Suite 1309 NY 10017 New-York
Phone Number: 001 646 395 7103

8) International Court of Justice
Email: information@icj-cij.org
Phone: (+31) 70 302 23 23
Fax: (+31) 70 364 99 28
Twitter: @CIJ_ICJ
Website: http://www.icj-cij.org/en


“Paralyzed teacher being held in Manisa prison for 22 months over coup charges”

“21 aydır tutuklu bulunan eğitimci İsa Kara sağlık sorunları nedeniyle zor günler geçiriyor”

“Ağır hasta 34 yıllık öğretmen cezaevinde ölüme terk edildi”






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Women and Children in Prison

As you are aware, recent reports from the Journalist and Writers Foundation in Turkey and the Stockholm Center for Freedom have estimated the number of women in Turkish prisons is a staggering 17,000 along with over 660 children. Official records indicate that 23 percent of these children are infants less than a year old. Dr. Alan Mendoza, executive director of the Henry Jackson Society (a British foreign policy think tank) said “prison is no place for children in any civilized country”.

These reports have questioned the basis for the detainment and imprisonment of these women, as well as the timing of their arrests, in some cases shortly after giving birth. Many of these women have been held without charges being pressed and without access to legal representation, and in some cases, access to their family.

Reports from within Turkey have shown images of security officials waiting outside hospital rooms for mothers to be discharged in order to detain them and their newborn children. With the critical need of preventing bacteria during a child’s first months, questions about the conditions of the prisons where these women are held with their newborn children have also arisen in numerous media reports. Since “extra food, books, phone calls, trips to the hospital, and bathroom supplies are all added to inmates’ prison bills” some women with poor financial situation cannot afford basic hygienic items such as sanitary pads (which they are not provided).

The prison conditions are not satisfactory for the well being of women, and especially children. They are forced to stay in overcrowded rooms, denied health care, missing fresh air and have to share bed and meal.

Many inmates sleep on the floor. Human Rights Association (IHD) has stated that in Turkey, 1025 prisoners are in poor health, 357 of which are seriously ill. Nonetheless, at a parliamentary hearing, it was revealed that at least five women have suspiciously died at the women’s prison in Kocaeli’s Gebze district .

We wholeheartedly condemn this violation of basic human rights of not only the imprisoned women but also these children who are being subjected to a life behind bars without cause.

Read AST’s report on women and children in prison:

Download AST’s presentation on women and children in prison:

News and reports on women and children in prison:

We urge everyone to take action. Express your views or send attached statement to your Representatives and Senators, and urge them to bring up this concern to the State Department:

U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Senators
State Representatives
State Senators

Find your members of Congress:
Find your senators:

Download sample statement as a word document:

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Prison Conditions For Women and Children in Turkey

Attached is a presentation regarding the prison conditions for women and children. It can be utilized and shared by anyone to advocate for the release of women and children from the Turkish prisons.

Download the presentation as a PowerPoint file: AST_Women-Children-in-Prison

Download the presentation as a pdf: AST_Women-Children-in-Prison

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