11 women charged with making vinegar in Ankara prison

Eleven inmates who are all political prisoners in the capital Ankara have been charged with making vinegar inside the prison in violation of the rules, Turkish Minute reported, citing the Kronos news site.

According to Kronos, an investigation was opened into inmates at Sincan Women’s Prison on August 14, 2021, accused of “carrying contraband to a prison or place of arrest” for using items such as bottles of plastic water and sparkling water to make vinegar in prison.

The indictment drafted for the 11 prisoners states that following a search of the prison on August 14, 2021, water mixtures containing fruit particles were found in a bottle of water from 5 liters and two plastic sparkling water bottles in the common lounge. areas of two different neighborhoods.

Examination of samples taken from the two liquid mixtures revealed that they did not contain any narcotic or stimulant substances, only ethyl alcohol, according to the indictment.

The indictment also quoted the inmates as saying that vinegar was not sold in the prison canteen and so they wanted to make it themselves for the purpose of cleaning the vegetables and fruits given to them. by washing them with vinegar in order to protect themselves from COVID. -19 and that they would not use it for any other purpose.

The prosecutor who drafted the indictment argued that it included defenses of suspects, witness statements, an incident report and an expert report, among other documents, which could serve as sufficient evidence. to bring charges against the 11 detainees.

The trial’s first hearing will be on June 2, Kronos said.

A purge of thousands of dissidents following a coup attempt in July 2016 filled Turkish prisons, which are now overcrowded with tens of thousands of political prisoners.

The fast-spreading coronavirus has raised greater concerns in Turkish prisons, which were already notorious for human rights abuses, overcrowding and unsanitary conditions before the pandemic.

Turkey’s parliament passed a temporary release law on April 14, 2020, aimed at reducing the prison population in the country’s overcrowded prisons due to the pandemic. The legislation, which excludes political prisoners such as politicians, journalists, lawyers, academics and human rights defenders convicted under the country’s controversial anti-terrorism laws, has prompted calls from the UN, the EU and rights groups in favor of a non-discriminatory reduction of prison populations.

A provisional release affecting some 90,000 prisoners would end for 80,000 of them on May 31 and would not be extended, the Türkiye daily said in a report last week, citing government sources.

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