Thousands of women sign petition calling for release of jailed Kurdish politician Aysel Tuğluk

Thousands of women from several countries around the world have signed a petition calling for the release of Kurdish politician Aysel Tuğluk, who is kept in prison despite her early-on-dementia.

Duvar English 

The number of women who have signed the petition named "A Call from 1000 Women for Freedom to Aysel Tuğluk," has exceeded 5,000, daily Birgün said in a report

The campaign calls for the release of jailed former People's Democratic Party (HDP) deputy Aysel Tuğluk, who is suffering from early-on-dementia. 

Women from many parts of the world, including the USA, Germany, Australia, Switzerland, Belgium, the United Kingdom, and France, signed the petition that reads: "We can no longer stay silent when her life is blatantly put at risk. We can no longer remain mere spectators. As 1000 women from all walks of life and different branches of the women's movement, we invite everyone to become Aysel's voice."

The petition will be open for signature until Jan. 12. 

Tuğluk was imprisoned in December 2016 over charges of being linked to the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. She was released with special permission in September 2017 to attend her mother's funeral in Ankara. 

Tuğluk's health condition worsened afterwards. Despite repeated appeals by her lawyers, prison officials have refused to release her. Lawyers have secured a medical report from Kocaeli University Hospital department of Forensic Medicine that said Tuğluk was not fit to stay in prison due to her illness. However, Istanbul Forensic Medicine Institute (ATK) did not consider this report valid and stated, "Her disease will not prevent her from being in prison."

The Human Rights Association previously confirmed the diagnosis, and 68 civil society organizations issued a statement. In their words, they emphasized that the ATK's report was not scientific and that the Ministry of Justice was responsible for this situation.