Three mothers of inmates on a hunger strike in Turkish prisons have been referred to as “ignorant” in police records because they are illiterate, according to a report by the Mezapotamya news agency on Tuesday.
The women were among a group of 41 that also included lawyers and journalists who were detained in İstanbul last week for taking part in demonstrations to attract attention to the hunger strikers. Forty of the protestors were released on judicial probation on Monday, while one of them, an official from the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), was arrested over his social media posts.
Instead of using the term “illiterate,” police referred to three women as “ignorant” in the education level section of their report.
Lawyers for the women who were at the police station while the women were being questioned but missed the controversial reference to the women in the police records said they would file a criminal complaint against the police officers who are responsible.
HDP deputy Leyla Güven went on a hunger strike in November protesting jailed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan’s inability to speak with his lawyers, referring to it as his “isolation.”
As of March, nearly 7,000 HDP members including prisoners joined Güven to protest Öcalan’s “isolation,” with some inmates even committing suicide to draw attention to the hunger strikes.
The families of inmates on hunger strike have been trying to raise awareness of the situation by means of sit-ins and small demonstrations.