Turkish prison authorities beat Kurdish political prisoner suffering from cancer


Taylan Çintay, a Kurdish political prisoner suffering from cancer, was hospitalized one day after his medical operation. He started bleeding as he was beaten at the entrance of the prison and was taken to the emergency room. The prison authorities launched an investigation against him, alleging that “he got wounded by hitting himself against the wall,” Bianet reported.

36-year-old Taylan Çintay, a seriously ill cancer patient, has been in prison for 15 years. He underwent five medical operations due to bladder cancer during that period.

Çintay was transferred to Sincan Prison in Ankara from Diyarbakır Prison where he had been held and underwent an operation at Ankara Numune Hospital on May 19. He was discharged from the hospital on May 20 and taken back to Sincan Prison.

Adil Zozani, Hakkari MP of the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), made a statement about Çintay who had been exposed to maltreatment at Sincan Prison.

Çintay was forced to remove all his clothes at the entrance of the prison, Zozani stated.

Çintay told the warders that he was just coming from the hospital because he had had a comprehensive operation and that their demand was against human rights and refused to take off all of his clothes. But, 4 or 5 warders took off Çintay’s clothes by force. In the meantime, Çintay was beaten and tortured.

His wound started to bleed because of the beating. He was taken to the emergency room of the prison hospital and got a medical report documenting the torture he had been subjected to.

Having filed a criminal complaint against the prison authorities and prison staff, Çintay was exposed to the persecution of the director of the prison this time. The director of the prison launched a disciplinary proceeding against Çintay on the ground that he had intentionally hit his arms at the wall to injure himself.

Çintay was held in a cell that did not even have a bed for two days even though he was seriously ill and had just had a medical operation.

Çintay was born in Malatya and became a guerilla before he was 20 years old. He was caught when he was 21 and sentenced to life imprisonment. Zozani, MP of BDP, said:

The state of Taylan Çintay who has been exposed to inhumane treatment is a reflection of the unlawful practices experienced in all prisons.

Violations of rights as well as unlawful and arbitrary treatments in Turkish prisons have reached an unacceptable level. The government must immediately take action for ill prisoners.

We are calling on all authorities, particularly the Ministry of Justice, to conduct a legal and administrative investigation against the prison personnel responsible for the inhumane practices in Sincan Prison.

According to the Human Rights Association (IHD), there are 413 sick prisoners in Turkey. 122 prisoners are near death and 108 of them need extremely urgent treatment.