CHP says Silivri Prison a ‘concentration camp’
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Republican People’s Party leader Kılıçdaroğlu (C) paid a visit to Silivri Prison to see CHP’s İzmir deputy Mustafa Balbay and Zonguldak deputy Mehmet Haberal. AA photo
Leader of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu paid a visit to Silivri Prison on the last day of the Feast of Sacrifice yesterday to see CHP’s İzmir deputy Mustafa Balbay and Zonguldak deputy Mehmet Haberal.
Speaking to reporters after visiting the jailed deputies at Silivri Prison near Istanbul, main opposition leader Kılıçdaroğlu said the venue was a concentration camp in 21st-century Turkey.
“In countries where there is no logic and wisdom, where there is no developing concept of democracy and freedom, those who speak out about their opinions are being held in concentration camps,” Kılıçdaroğlu said. “People elected by the votes of the citizens are held in these camps.”
Kılıçdaroğlu said there was no equal distribution of justice and that the judicial process in Turkey was under the control of political authority. “They call this democracy and justice. Can you call him a judge, a judge who does not act with his conscience? If you set out with the logic, ‘I take my own way,’ you cannot dispense justice,” he said.
Criticizing that journalists, scientists, researchers and writers are held in prisons, Kılıçdaroğlu said the only common denominator of all of them is opposition to the government.
“The price of opposing the government is being held in the concentration camp at Silivri. This is a shame of democracy. This doesn’t suit Turkey. If this process is mentioned in the European Union progress reports, if the speaker of Parliament complains about it, and if some government ministers complain about it, then it should be questioned: Why can’t you end this process? Turkey must recover from this democracy shame.”
European court process
Kılıçdaroğlu also said Mehmet Haberal was complaining about forged documents that have been sent to the European Court of Human Rights.
“Balbay and Haberal wish to be freed as soon as possible. They want to be on duty and they want to explain what democracy and freedom demand,” he said. “Haberal does not know why he was arrested. He complained about forged documents that have been sent to the European Court of Human Rights. It does not suit Republic of Turkey to send forged documents to an international court,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.
Haberal, who remains under arrest as part of the investigation into the alleged Ergenekon criminal gang, had gone to the European court in July to apply to be released from prison, however his application was rejected.
Responding to a question from a reporter whether they were searched before entering the prison, Kılıçdaroğlu said, “What can they search for? I have only a pen? Although wielding the pen is the biggest crime of all.”
Balbay and Haberal are in prison on charges of participating in an alleged plot to overthrow the government.