Cenk Sarı, an inmate serving at a state prison in Antalya province, will be laid to rest today at a funeral in Antalya after dying from a massive heart attack in his prison cell.
According to a tweet posted by pro-Kurdish Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu reported, Sarı’s heart attack was triggered by increasingly poor conditions in prison facilities in Turkey.
“Cenk Sarı, an inmate serving at Antalya E Type Closed prison, died of heart attack today. Heat, overpopulated prison cells, and other problems!!!. People die,” Gergerlioğlu tweeted.
At least 41 prisoners have died of cancer related complications in prisons across Turkey between July 2016 and January 2021.
According to the Human Rights Association (İHD), there are more than 1,605 sick prisoners in Turkish prisons, approximately 604 of whom are critically ill. Although most of the seriously ill patients have forensic and medical reports deeming them unfit to remain in prison, they are not released. Authorities refuse to release them on the grounds that they pose a potential danger to society. In the first eight months of 2020, five critically ill prisoners passed away because they were not released in time to receive proper medical treatment.
Since April 2020, four seriously ill prisoners over the age of 70 have died in penal institutions; five inmates suffering from cancer died shortly after they were released; and 16 died of chronic illnesses while imprisoned.