Turkey’s Interior Minister’s Süleyman Soylu defended brutal treatment on Abdi Abidin, Kurdish man who was alleged to have been tortured while under prison, saying he was linked to terrorist activities.

“He talks about an elderly man. He says: ‘You are torturing him!’ There is nothing unlawful. We have been following the elderly man’s home for the past 5 months. This house is the one where they planned Istanbul, Mersin and Izmir attacks and the man whom you call elderly is abetting terrorism at this house,” Soylu told a ceremony in Trabzon on Friday.

Abidin was detained in the village of Koruköy in southeastern Mardin province, under blockade as part of Turkish military operations against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) since Feb. 11.

Family members have not heard from Abidin for 14 days until a powerful photo, claimed to be of his, was published in the social media, raising allegations of torture.

Main opposition Republican Peoples’ Party (CHP) deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu shared the photo asking Soylu if the allegations were true.

Turkey’s Human Rights Association (İHD) said in a recent report that several families cannot reach their children in Koruköy due to the blockade.