Mothers at Justice Vigils call for struggle to be spread

The Justice Vigils carried out by relatives of political prisoners in Turkey to demand freedom for Abdullah Öcalan continue. Activists are calling for the actions to be spread.

Numerous actions are taking place as part of the political campaign “Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan and a political solution to the Kurdish question”. On 27 November, prisoners from the PKK and PAJK went on hunger strike. At the same time, the Justice Vigils are carried out by relatives, especially the mothers of prisoners. The vigil in Amed (Diyarbakır) organized by the prisoner solidarity association TUAY-DER are taking place in the DEM party building in the Bağlar district. ANF spoke to the women taking part in the vigil.

“We want peace and justice”

Afife Kartal, the mother of Antalya political prisoner Muhammet Kartal, said: “I was visiting my son last week. The morale of the prisoners was good, but there is repression, oppression and injustice against them by the prison authorities. My son lost six kilograms in the ten days he was on hunger strike. Unfortunately, the prison administration does not follow the procedures it should apply to hunger strikers. The prisoners on hunger strike are not receiving either water nor salt. The prisoners have to drink water from the tap. We want justice. We, the mothers, say: justice, justice, justice. We want Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan] to be able to receive visits from his lawyers and his family. We want the isolation of our representative to end. If the isolation of Rêber Apo ends, the isolation of our children will also end. We just want justice and peace. As long as the hunger strike started by our sons and daughters continues, we will continue the vigil. Let’s spread this campaign together.”

“We do not accept this injustice”

Zekiye Yılmaz called for wider support of the action. She said: “We want this torture to end in Turkey. They say there is justice in this country, but we don't see justice. Whatever the rights of people in prison are, we want our children to have those rights too. They are using enemy law against us. Our children are tortured and harassed in prisons. We are mothers, and it breaks our hearts when we see our children like this. They are illegally detaining our sons and daughters. As mothers, we will never accept this injustice. We are here to support our children's resistance. We will not end the justice watch until our children’s demands are met.”

“Isolation is a crime against humanity”

Fatma Adak added: “We condemn the current solitary confinement of Rêber Apo. We do not accept that political prisoners are kept in solitary confinement. First of all, we want the isolation of our representative and our children in prison to be lifted. We are here to support our sons and daughters in prison. From here, I call on all our people to support our action. What the state is doing to us is an injustice. We do not accept this oppression. The Kurdish people should stand up for their will. I believe that our action will end successfully.”

"The struggle goes on"

Fatma Çağır underlined that Öcalan's total isolation, which has been ongoing for three years, must end immediately and continued: “We are here to end the isolation in prisons. Our children in prison went on hunger strike for Rêber Apo. We are here to support them. Our children continue to struggle in prison, and we continue to struggle outside. The struggle will continue.”