A court in Turkey’s northwestern Kocaeli province ordered the arrest of Şadiye Manap, who had just qualified for parole after serving 28 years behind bars, daily Özgür Politika reported.
Manap had not yet been released from prison when the new order for her arrest came in, over new charges of membership in the prison wing of a terrorist organisation. The Kurdish woman was not allowed to make a defence statement before the order was issued.
The new investigation, prepared in 2020, cited poetry, song lyrics and short stories Manap wrote while serving time since 1992 as evidence of her “continued” terrorist activity. The case was left in limbo until after she qualified for parole, her lawyers told reporters. An indictment has not been provided to the defence team.
“My client had previously testified for this investigation. On 1 December, as we waited for her release, she was taken into custody on an excuse. She was held for four days, and in the end the prosecutor didn’t even bother to get her testimony,” lawyer Elif Taşdöğen said.
“They didn’t need a handwriting sample from her for almost 30 years, but figured they would ask for one on the day she was supposed to be released,” the lawyer continued.
In a note delivered via her lawyer, Manap said authorities had confiscated as part of the investigation 28 years’ worth of writing, including her notes, poetry, song lyrics, translations, articles and short stories.
“I didn’t send anything home except for a few photos and letters, because our country is not a safe place and I couldn’t be sure how well my family would have been able to preserve them,” she lamented. “They took everything, without exaggeration. I don’t even have a piece of paper to write on.”
Some 50 women had their personal documents confiscated in the same raid on their ward, Manap said.