On Thursday Selahattin Demirtas, co-leader of the HDP has written in a statement from prison he will join the strike on Friday March 31st.
The chair of Izmir Solidarity with Political Prisoners Initiative, Selma Altan, said the hunger strikers have crossed the critical phase and have started to suffer irreversible damage, and called on the public and NGOs to “speak out”.
Altan said that the prisoners are subjected to severe pressure, torture and rights violations and added: “The conditions in Şakran Prison are like torture camps. There is an incredible torture.. Each section’s warden employs different torture techniques. The hunger strikers are in critical condition now. There are people who have lost 10 kilos. They are entering the period of irreversible damage. An independent committee should go in and inspect. Let’s speak out, or it will be so much worse.”
The group Freedom From Torture detailed evidence of torture being practiced in Turkey in its written submission to the recent Foreign Affairs Committee Report on UK-Turkey relations saying: “For the past five years Turkey has been one of the top ten countries of origin for those referred to us for clinical services [in response to torture] and last year it moved into the top five”.