Opposition party leader calls for release of mother of child suffering from bone cancer

Temel Karamollaoğlu, the leader of Turkey’s Islamist opposition Felicity Party (SP), on Tuesday visited a 6-year-old boy hospitalized with bone cancer and called for the immediate release of his mother from prison, Bold Medya reported.

Yusuf Kerim Sayın’s mother, Gülten Sayın, is currently serving a sentence on conviction of alleged links to the Gülen movement.

“We visited Yusuf Kerim at the hospital where he is being treated and spoke with his father Süleyman Sayın about his situation. It is crucial that his mother, who is in prison, be released and that she be with her child at this time. I call on President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ to respond to this request,” Karamollaoğlu said on Twitter.

Peoples’ Democratic Party deputy and human rights defender Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu, a medical doctor by profession, recently said Ewing’s sarcoma, which Yusuf Kerim was diagnosed with, is one of the deadliest of cancers and that Yusuf Kerim might die while his mother is in prison.

Gülten Sayın was sentenced to six years, three months for working at a student dormitory in the northwestern province of Sakarya that the government subsequently closed down because of its alleged ties to the Gülen movement. She was also accused of depositing money in Bank Asya, which was shuttered by the government after a coup attempt in 2016 because of its links to the movement.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been targeting followers of the Gülen movement, inspired by Turkish Muslim cleric Fethullah Gülen, since the corruption investigations of December 17-25, 2013, which implicated then-prime minister Erdoğan, his family members and his inner circle.

Dismissing the investigations as a Gülenist coup and conspiracy against his government, Erdoğan designated the movement as a terrorist organization and began to target its members. He intensified the crackdown on the movement following the abortive putsch in 2016 that he accused Gülen of masterminding. Gülen and the movement strongly deny involvement in the coup attempt or any terrorist activity.

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