PKK prisoner sets himself on fire against isolation and pressures

PKK prisoner Yahya Özmen in Edirne F Type Prison set himself on fire in protest at the isolation on Öcalan and prison conditions. Özmen was not taken to hospital and is held in prison infirmary.

In Edirne F Type Prison where HDP (Peoples’ Democratic Party) Co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş is imprisoned, PKK prisoner Yahya Özmen set himself on fire five days ago to protest the isolation on Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan and the ever-worsening prison conditions.

While Özmen was not taken to hospital and is held in prison infirmary, his family learned about the incident only during their visit this week. When Özmen did not show up for the visitation, the prison officials told them about his situation. Asking why they have not been informed, the family was told that “he is in intensive care for 5 days”.

Özmen has burns from the waist down and he is allegedly “treated” in the prison infirmary instead of a general hospital although he remains in life-threatening condition.

The prison officials we talked to about the incident over the phone did not deny the incident but refused to provide further information.