Turkish president visits prison-turned-museum
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
President Gül visits a cell where late Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit was imprisoned.
Turkish President Abdullah Gül has visited Ankara's Ulucanlar prison in which important figures from Turkey's recent past were incarcerated before the facility was converted into a museum.
Gül shared pictures of his visit and his views on the prison's notorious history on his Twitter account today.
"Ulucanlar is a living monument which shows that nothing but tyranny prevails in the absence of democracy and justice," Gül tweeted, referring to the imprisonment of important politicians, journalists, writers and intellectuals, as well the execution of revolutionaries – including Deniz Gezmiş – in the prison during the 81 years the compound was in service.
One picture showed Gül in a cell where late Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit was imprisoned after the 1980 coup. From there, Gül toured the facility, visiting wards, detention cells and courtyards. "There were bitter memories everywhere," Gül tweeted.
Gül wrote that he knew Ulucanlar in its prison form as well, because he went there once in the 1970s to visit an imprisoned friend.
"Ulucanlar reminded me of the value of having a democratic rule of law. We should protect democracy and our rights in order to prevent the events that took place within the cells and wards [of Ulucanlar prison]," he wrote.
Ulucanlar prison was taken out of use in 2006.