Probe launched into dismissed protestor’s 70-year-old mother
Mesut Hasan Benli - ANKARA
The Ankara Public Prosecutor’s Office has launched an investigation into seven people, including Veli Saçılık’s mother—a sociologist who was dismissed from his post with a state of emergency decree last year—on charges for opposing the “law on meetings and demonstration.”
The seven people, including his mother Kezban Saçılık, had supported Veli Saçılık’s protest on June 13 demanding to be returned to his job in the capital Ankara and the two jailed educators, Nuriye Gülmen and Semih Akça who have been on hunger strike, to be released from jail.
Kezban Saçılık told daily Hürriyet about what she went through on the day of the protest.
“They [the police] knocked Veli on the ground. Then they all attacked him. After Veli fell to the floor, I was going to intervene and cover him to protect him from getting beat up, but at that moment, one of the police officers turned to me and sprayed tear gas in my eyes. I could not open my eyes and fell to the floor. They also hit me on the head,” she said.
Veli Saçılık lost his arm in 2000, three years after being arrested in a workers’ union demonstration, in a military operation known as “Operation Return to Life” conducted in 20 prisons across Turkey. The move was to end hunger strikes staged by inmates in protest of newly built prisons with solitary confinement cells.