Turkey is going through its darkest and gloomiest days in terms of rule of law, the right to a fair trial and even the most fundamental rights and liberties, which are major benchmarks for democracy. Intellectuals, journalists, critical politicians, businesspeople, celebrities and media organizations are being silenced via threats and oftentimes jailed.

The recent statement of a Turkish lawyer, who claimed that the AK Party government is allegedly planning the mass killing of people jailed for real or alleged links to the Gülen movement in a staged riot at Silivri Prison, means we have now entered the last phase of the fate of thousands of civilians, journalists, and politicians who have been kept in Turkish prisons in very poor conditions since the July 15 failed coup attempt in the country.

Ömer Turanlı, a lawyer representing a former police chief imprisoned as part of a crackdown against the movement, said on Nov. 4 that he worries for the lives of his clients.

“According to unconfirmed reports my clients have received from their families, officials will open the gates [of holding cells] in order for prisoners to escape as if in a prison break. And then soldiers will be ordered to shoot them down,” Turanlı tweeted.

Given the previous confirmed news of physical violence and sexual harassment in Turkish prisons, Turkey Purge is seriously concerned about the possible implementation of this heinous plan.

In fact, the lawyer’s allegations coincide with pro-government news reports which portrayed the sketch of an electronic circuit board as a prison break map prepared by inmates imprisoned for real or percieved ties to the Gülen movement.

We are deeply concerned about all these developments that undermine even the most fundamental human rights. We believe the only way out of this nightmarish atmosphere is to return to democracy and the rule of law. We are publishing our concerns to inform the Turkish people and the rest of the world who still believe in democracy.