Inmates in Turkey’s correctional facilities will now be allowed 30 minutes of video calls each week thanks to a new criminal law that aims to limit human interaction to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Inmates who are in correctional facilities that can support the technology will be allowed 30 minutes of video calls each week in addition to weekly visitations.
Inmates who choose to forgo their weekly visitations will be allowed 30 additional minutes on the video call system. These additional calls will be limited to three per week.Turkey's inmates left vulnerable against coronavirus, complaints surge
Political prisoners and inmates convicted of organized crimes will require a committee’s approval to have additional minutes on the video call system.
The approval will be based on the inmates’ “behavior and participation in group activities.”Reduction in sex offense sentences included in judiciary reform fast-tracked under coronavirus precautions
In addition, staff at correctional facilities will be kept in isolation on their days off, not being allowed any contact with the outside world, Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül said.
Meanwhile, all hearings will be suspended until after April 30, except for urgent ones, Gül added.
The Justice Ministry also expedited all backlogged payments to lawyers, Gül said, and the money will be delivered to all courts my April 6.
Lastly, some 459 persons are being interrogated for disturbing the public peace and some 385 persons are being investigated for social media posts, Gül said.