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13 August

Social media campaign seeks freedom for ailing Metin Duran

Duran, who lost his memory, his ability to walk and speak after a stroke that followed a heart attack, has been in prison for over 4 months

 
 A social media campaign was launched over the weekend seeking freedom for jailed former journalist Metin Duran, who has been in Sincan Prison for the past 4.5 months despite his ailment.
 
A former employee of Radyo Rengin, a Mardin-based radio station which was closed down through an emergency decree, Duran lost his memory as well as his ability to walk and speak following a stroke, which came on the heels of a heart attack he had suffered. Despite his ailment, Duran was taken into custody in his family home in Nusaybin 4.5 months ago and sent to prison because a court convicted him of “committing crimes on behalf of a terrorist organization without being its member” and sentenced him to a prison term of 3 years, 3 months and 15 days, the Mezopotamya news agency (MA) reported on Sunday.
 
Immediately after being brought to the Sincan Prison, Duran was admitted to the hospital inside the Sincan Prison complex due to the severity of his condition. His family filed for Duran’s release, but the prison management asked for a medical report by the Council of Forensic Medicine proving that Duran is “medically unfit for prison.”
 
The Council of Forensic Medicine has yet to issue the said report, and Duran is allowed to have only one family member, one of his brothers, accompany him in the prison complex hospital.
 
When news broke recently of Duran’s condition, friends of the journalist launched a social media campaign seeking Duran’s immediate release from prison. Launched on 12 August, the campaign features posts with the hashtag #MetinDuranaÖzgürlük.
 
Duran had suffered a heart attack shortly after doctors at the Mardin State Hospital, where he went to be checked for his heart, sent him home, telling him his condition was “psychological.” He was admitted to the intensive care unit following the heart attack, but a stroke that followed immediately left him unable to speak and walk, MA reported.

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