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1ST LEAD Turkish court releases one of two teachers on extended hunger strike By Shabtai Gold

Europe
20.10.2017
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Istanbul (dpa) - A Turkish court ruled Friday to release a teacher who has been on hunger strike for more than 220 days to protest his firing but ordered that a second educator taking the same action will remain behind bars, the private Dogan news agency reported.

Semih Ozakca, a teacher, and Nuriye Gulmen, an academic, both started an open-ended hunger strike in March after they were fired from their jobs as part of the massive purges in Turkey following a failed coup attempt last year. More than 150,000 people have lost their jobs.

Ozakca will be released but will have to wear an electronic bracelet to track him.

They were arrested in May, accused of membership in a terrorist organization. Their lawyers were arrested in September. Police have regularly broken up protests supporting the two hunger strikers, who are said to be in weak condition.

The pair have pledged to live off of only water, sugar, salt and vitamin B until they are reinstated as educators.

The court will reconvene on their case on November 24.

 

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