Sezgin Tanrıkulu, a Turkish deputy from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has called on Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım to stop the practice of detaining women hours after giving birth due to their alleged links to the Gülen movement, which is accused by Turkish authorities of masterminding a coup attempt on July 15, 2016.
Tanrıkulu posted several photos of women who were detained after giving birth to babies in hospitals in different parts of Turkey and said, “Stop sending police to hospital rooms to detain woman right after their babies are delivered.”
Tanrıkulu shared photos of Rümeysa Doğan in an Antalya hospital and Ayşe Kaya from Edirne and said, “Ayşe Kaya was sent to jail as her four-day-old baby was given to its grandmother.”
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the putsch, the AKP government along with Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen group, led by US-based cleric Fethullah Gülen. The group denies the accusations.
Hundreds of human tragedies in Turkey have so far been reported. Turkish officials, for instance, have systematically been detaining women on coup charges either when they are pregnant or shortly after giving birth. The detention of Rümeysa Doğan is the third in a week and 17th in the past 9 months.
In June, teacher Esra Demir was detained a day after giving birth in Batman as part of the witch-hunt targeting the Gülen movement.
In May, Aysun Aydemir, an English teacher who gave birth to a baby in a Cesarean procedure, was detained at the hospital for links to the Gülen movement and subsequently arrested by a court and put in pretrial detention with a three-day-old baby in Zonguldak province.
In late January, Fadime Günay, who had just given birth, was detained by police at Antalya’s Alanya Başkent Hospital as part of the same witch-hunt.
In early January, Ş.A., a former private school teacher and mother of a week-old premature infant, was taken into police custody over links to the movement while she was on her way to the hospital to feed the baby.
A day after Ş.A. was taken into police custody, another mother known as Meryem gave birth to twins by C-section at a hospital in Konya and was detained by police despite doctors’ reports that she should not travel and was taken to Aksaray from Konya in a police car.
According to recent data released by the Ministry of Justice, more than 2,250 mothers are held in penal institutions, of whom 520 are obliged to raise their 0 to 6-year-old children in prison.
A total of 138,148 people have been dismissed from their jobs, 118,235 detained and 55,927 arrested as part of a government crackdown following the failed coup last summer, a tally by TurkeyPurge.com said.