One hundred forty-two people comprising academics, journalists, writers and lawyers, among them Turkish Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk, called on the government to immediately release Mardin Mayor Ahmet Turk, who was arrested on Nov. 24, the Diken news website reported on Friday.
“Ahmet Türk has a pacemaker. Despite the obvious fact that prison conditions could cause his health to worsen, we believe that insisting on his incarceration pending trial could lead to grave consequences,” said the declaration signed by 142 people including Ahmet İnsel, Akın Birdal, Arif Sağ, Aydın Engin, Banu Güven, Baskın Oran, Cahit Berkay, Ceyda Karan, Emine Uşaklıgil, Gencay Gürsoy, İbrahim Kaboğlu, Karin Karakaşlı, Murat Belge, Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu, Ömer Madra, Rıza Türmen, Yetvart Danzikyan, Yasemin Çongar, Zülfü Livaneli and Yılmaz Odabaşı, who underlined the much-respected personality of Türk and his way of doing politics by rejecting violence.
The 74-year-old Kurdish politician, who was arrested on charges of membership in a terror organization, reportedly suffers from heart disease and diabetes.
Turk, who was arrested and sent to İstanbul’s notorious Silivri Prison on Dec 19, was transferred to a prison in Elazığ province on Jan. 4. according to Turkish media outlets.