Turkish prison authorities find HDP's letter to former MP 'risky'

Turkish prison authorities have found HDP's letter to former deputy Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu "risky" and didn't give it to him, the politician's son said. He also slammed prison conditions and said that his father suffers from rheumatism.

Duvar English 

Turkish prison authorities in the capital Ankara have prevented former Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) deputy Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu from receiving a letter sent by his own party, the politician's son said. 

Sincan Prison authorities found the letter "risky," Salih Gergerlioğlu told Fırat News Agency, adding that the letter included news reports on his father. 

"The HDP sends news reports about my father to prison, but they are not given to my father. They say that the news reports are from risky media outlets," Gergerlioğlu said, while asking what a person can do with the print-outs of the stories about himself in prison. 

"He can only use his right to receive news and that's a basic right," he said. 

Former HDP lawmaker Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu, also a human rights defender, was sentenced to prison in 2018 for "making terrorism propaganda" by sharing a news article on the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) on Twitter back in 2016.

The politically motivated charges led to him being stripped of his parliamentary status on March 17 despite the lack of a final ruling from the Constitutional Court.

He was forcefully detained on April 2, with police officers battering the politician at his home. He was then hospitalized due to high blood pressure under police custody and put in intensive care, before police officers hastily took him out and transferred him to prison on April 3.

His son has been sharing his father's condition ever since.

Salih Gergerlioğlu said that TV channels critical of the government are missing from the TV in his father's cell and that they are allowed to send 12 books in two months, which is significantly less than the number the politician reads. 

Gergerlioğlu also said that his father suffers from rheumatism.