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Second hearing of the trial of academic Nuriye Gülmen and teacher Semih Özakça, who have been on hunger strike demanding their jobs back for 204 days, and discharged teacher Karadağ pending trial without arrest, will be held at Sincan Prison Campus today (September 28).
Gülmen and Özakça weren’t brought to courtroom on pretexts such as “security, lack of personnel and medical conditions, possibility of being kidnapped”. Gülmen is in the intensive care unit in Numune Hospital where she was brought to on September 25, and Özakça is kept in the prison hospital.
The educators are charged with “being a member of an armed terror organization”, “opposing to Law on Demonstrations and Rallies”, and “propagandizing for a terror organization”.
About Gülmen and Özakça
Nuriye Gülmen was employed at Eskişehir Osmangazi University.
After her contract was not renewed, she brought a lawsuit and won. Seven months later, she started to work at Selçuk University. A day after she started her job, she was suspended from her duty based on the "FETÖ-PDY (Fethullahist Terror Organization-Parallel State Structure) investigation launched into her. She was discharged on January 6, 2017 via the Statutory Decree No. 679.
Semih Özakça was a classroom teacher at Mazıdağı Cumhuriyet Primary School in Mardin. He was discharged via the Statutory Decree No. 675 over "being linked with terror organizations".
Gülmen has been in front of Human Rights Monument on Yüksel Street in the heart of Turkey's capital city of Ankara to stage a sit-in since November 9, 2016 and Özakça since November 23, 2016.
On hunger strike since March 9, 2017
On March 9, Gülmen and Özakça were taken into custody and went on a permanent non—rotational hunger strike in detention.
During their resistance protest that they started in front of Human Rights Monument on Yüksel Street in Ankara, they have been detained and released several times.
On May 22, they were detained for the last time and arrested on the next day. They have been continuing their hunger strike in prison since their arrest on May 23.
On July 8, 2017, they were transferred to Sincan Prison Campus State Hospital that is located outside of Ankara after spending 46 days behind bars where they continued their hunger strike.
On September 15, the first hearing was held without the presence of the defendants as the gendarmerie refused to bring them to the court due to "health and security reasons". The court ruled that Gülmen and Özakça remain further in detention on remand.
On September 26, Gülmen was taken from Sincan Prison Campus Hospital on the 202th day of her hunger strike and was brought to intensive care unit at the Numune Hospital located at a central part of Ankara.
The next hearing will be on September 28. (BK/TK)
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