Tuesday, March 06, 2007


"Amnesty International believes that prolonged isolation including small group isolation may have serious effects on the physical and mental health of prisoners and may constitute cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. It can also facilitate torture and ill-treatment of prisoners."
~ Amnesty International.

Turkey is in denial over the European test results that indicate Ocalan is being poisoned by the TSK, from AP on the IHT:

"This is pure lies," Cicek said of the poisoning allegations at a news conference. "We have sent a three-member expert team. They are making necessary examinations. We will announce the results tomorrow or the day after."

More from the so-called Justice Minister, from the BBC:

Justice Minister Cemal Cicek has made the government's position clear. He said the claim that Mr Ocalan had been poisoned was a lie.

If Turkey had ever seen that as an option, he said, it would have happened long ago. Turkey is a state based on the rule of law, he stressed.

It's quite possible the regime did start the poisoning a long time ago with low levels of strontium and chromium in order to fake a "natural" death from bone cancer or leukemia. Such a slow poisoning would allow the Turkish government a measure of plausible deniability.

Let me also stress to the so-called Justice Minister, that it is not sufficient to send Turkish doctors to examine Ocalan or to handle new tests on hair samples. An independent, impartial, international medical team must handle this case. Given the Ankara regime's atrocious human rights record with regard to ordinary citizens and prisoners, and the fact that the regime is incapable of impartiality with regard to any subject touching on Kurds or Ocalan (Example: see Ahmet Turk's second conviction in a week's time--for refering to Ocalan as "Mr. Ocalan"), anything else is totally unacceptable.

In the meantime, there is another press release from KHRP, indicating that the EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC) is demanding a full investigation over the poisoning evidence:

5 March 2007

A KHRP press release on behalf of the EU-Turkey Civic Commission

For immediate release

EUTCC Demands Full Investigation following Recent Evidence of Mistreatment of Abdullah Öcalan

The EU-Turkey Civic Commission is extremely concerned at revelations regarding the health of Abdullah Öcalan, following the recent announcement by his legal team that analysis of hair samples uncovered evidence of contamination with elevated levels of chromium and strontium. The revelations reinforce concerns at the conditions of detention of Mr Öcalan, who has been the sole inmate on İmralı Island since 1999.

In reaction to these developments, EUTCC Chairwoman Kariane Westrheim stated “I am gravely concerned at the recent news that Mr Öcalan may be suffering from contamination with toxic chemicals in prison. I call on international institutions, particularly the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT), immediately to conduct a full investigation into these revelations and to take all necessary measures to ensure Mr Öcalan’s well being. I call on Turkey to cooperate fully in any investigation and ensure that the state of health of Mr Öcalan be independently verified and monitored. I would furthermore like to remind the Turkish Government, under whose jurisdiction Mr Öcalan is incarcerated, of its obligations under international human rights treaties and conventions, as well as its obligation to meet the Copenhagen Criteria. The abuse and mistreatment of prisoners is absolutely unacceptable in a democratic society. If Turkey is found to have had a hand in the alleged poisoning of Mr Öcalan, this will have grave consequences for both its EU accession hopes and its international standing.”


Chairwoman, EUTCC

Kariane Westrheim
Menneskerettighetenes Plass 1
5007 Bergen
Mobile: +47 97642088

Secretary General, EUTCC

Jon Rud
Sierra Altea, Buzon 138
03599 Altea la Vella
Tel. +34 965846645
Mobile: +34 666360148


Walter Jayawardene
Resources and Communications Coordinator
Kurdish Human Rights Project
11 Guilford Street,
London, WC1N 1DH
Tel: 020 7405 3835

Kurdish Human Rights Project is an independent, non-political human rights organisation dedicated to the promotion and protection of the human rights of all people in the Kurdish regions. It is a registered charity, founded and based in London

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