Grup Yorum members in Buca prison on a hunger strike for 38 days to protest violation of rights

Grup Yorum members Cem Dursun and Oktay Kelebek, who are in Buca prison, have been on a hunger strike for 38 days to protest the violations of their rights, especially the right to treatment.

Cem Dursun, who was arrested after being detained in Istanbul on 6 February, explained in a letter the practices he was subjected to during his time in Buca High Security Prison.

In the letter sent to Mezopotamya Agency (MA), he said that he was transferred to the newly opened Buca High Security Prison on 24 February, together with Oktay Kelebek. The two were kept under heavy isolation, and went on hunger strike to demand the release of 78-year-old seriously ill prisoner Mehmet Güvel.

Dursun said that the prison has both three-person and single cells, and that they are only allowed to go for air for two hours a day. He added that the cells are monitored with cameras 24 hours a day.

Dursun’s letter added: "Our request is to be transferred from this inhumane prison to a prison where our friends are. Mehmet Güvel, who is kept in this concrete coffin with us, is a 78-year-old and 80 percent disabled prisoner with Wernicke Korsakoff disease. He also has cancer and was arrested while his treatment was going on outside and he cannot continue his treatment in prison. Medical treatment is a right. Ill prisoners should benefit from this right. Leaving ill prisoners to the mercy of fascism is leaving them to die. We are resisting against these inhumane prisons with our hunger strike, and we demand the release of ill prisoner Mehmet Güvel and to be transferred to a prison where our friends are."