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Pregnant woman arrested on terrorism charges over alleged Gülen links

Photo by Ye Jinghan (Unsplash)

Zeynep Şakrak, a 30-year-old woman who is three months pregnant, was arrested in the western province of İzmir on Friday on terrorism charges due to her alleged links to the Gülen movement, the Bold Medya news website reported.

The Turkish government accuses the Gülen movement of masterminding a failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016 and labels it a “terrorist organization,” although the movement strongly denies involvement in the coup attempt or any terrorist activity.

Şakrak’s husband, Oktay, was also arrested after they appeared before a judge at the İzmir Courthouse.

According to Bold Medya, Zeynep Şakrak, who previously had two miscarriages, has another high-risk pregnancy yet is unable to access the medication she needs to prevent a miscarriage.

The family members of the couple, who were able to conceive following an IVF treatment, fear that the woman will lose her baby again.

Zeynep Şakrak’s brother, Muhammed Emin Bakan, told Bold Medya that his sister fell ill while in detention on the night of June 20 and had to be hospitalized.

“She was taking medication for diabetes and to prevent a miscarriage. We cannot get her the drugs because it’s weekend,” he said.

In a raid on the Şakrak family home, police teams found TL 2,500 which went into to the court records as evidence that she was aiding a terrorist organization.

Bakan said Zeynep earned the money by knitting amigurumi dolls and was hoping to use it for her delivery expenses because both she and her husband are unemployed.

Turkish law requires postponement of the arrest of pregnant women until they give birth and until the infant reach the age of six months.

Since the failed coup attempt, Turkey has been conducting a massive witch-hunt against people from all walks of life on charges of “coup involvement.” Many women jailed with their young children, immediately after delivery or while pregnant, are believed to be linked to the Gülen movement.

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