|Model letter re: the torture of Mehmet Bal|
Mehmet Bal, who had declared his conscientious objection in 2002 was consequently sent to the Adana Military Prison where he was on hunger strike for 33 days due to the violence inflicted there.
In the afternoon of Sunday June 8, 2008 conscientious objector Mehmet Bal was once again taken into custody by the police. The next day, he was sent to the Hasdal Military Prison, where he was subjected to a lynching attempt by 5 or 6 soldier-prisoners under the supervision and provocation of the prison administration.
In the evening of June 8, Bal was beaten around midnight by the soldiers on duty at the Besiktas Military Police Station where the police had handed him over.
In the evening of June 9, at the prisoners’ ward in the Hasdal Military Prison, with the information, approval and encouragement of military officials, he was stricken and severely beaten by other prisoners. Bal, who was committed to the Gumussuyu Military Hospital in the morning of June 10 was sent back the Hasdal Military Prison in the evening of the same day despite having been subjected to violence and a lynching attempt at this institution.
The recent experience of Mehmet Bal, who has been psychologically and physically tortured, proves once again the torturous procedures of “correction” applied by military prisons on conscientious objectors and all kinds of “disobedients” until today.
On account of these developments, tomorrow [Wednesday, June 11, 2008] we will present a statement to the press at 13:00 pm in front of the Istanbul Galatasaray High School to publicize the extensive campaign we have launched to support Mehmet Bal and to prevent the infliction of violence on him.
For those who would like to send faxes concerning this matter, we paste below and attach a text. For your name to be added under this fax, you could also email email@example.com.
TO THE GENERAL STAFF OF TURKEY
TO THE MINISTRY OF NATIONAL DEFENSE
TO THE HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION OF THE PARLIAMENT OF TURKEY
TO THE HASDAL MILITARY PRISON COMMANDERSHIP
Mehmet Bal had declared his conscientious objection in 2002 and was held under custody in the Adana Military Prison. There was an order for his arrest in abstentia following the medical leave of absence he was given. On account of this order, he was arrested in June 8, 2008.
I have been informed by his attorneys that Mehmet Bal was subjected to cruel and torturous treatment at the Besiktas Military Police Station in the evening of June 8, and was later sent to the Hasdal Military Prison.
I am also informed that in the evening of June 9 when Mehmet Bal was transferred to the Hasdal Military Prison, under the supervision of a junior military officer on duty, he was taken to a ward with the following instruction for other prisoners, “Do whatever is necessary, you know what to do, remind him of the prison rules,” and that upon his entrance to the ward, Bal was immediately attacked by some prisoners.
In the morning of June 10, Mehmet Bal was taken to the Gumussuyu Military Hospital due to the violence inflicted. In the evening of the same day, he was discharged and transferred back to the Hasdal Military Prison.
I declare that I will follow up on any treatment involving violence during the continuing custody of Mehmet Bal who has been severely attacked and subjected to a lynching attempt.
I state that the subject matter has been brought to the attention of the national and international public, and that the necessary legal procedures have been initiated.
Hasdal Military Prison: + 90 212 321 10 56
Human Rights Commission of The Parliament of Turkey: + 90 312 420 53 94
Ministry of National Defense: + 90 312 425 11 50
Turkish General Staff: + 90 312 425 08 13
Turkish Prime Ministry: + 90 312 417 04 76
Presidency of the Republic of Turkey: +90 312 441 38 16