UA 197/94 - Turkey: prisoner of conscience / medical concern: Mehdi Zana
Mehdi Zana, former mayor of Diyarbakir, was arrested on 13 May 1994. On 12 May he was convicted and sentenced to four years' imprisonment by the State Security Court in Ankara on charges of making "separatist propaganda". These charges relate to a speech he made before the Sub-Committee on Human Rights of the European Parliament on 3 December 1992. He had already been sentenced on 29 April to two years' imprisonment by Istanbul State Security Court for a speech he gave in Bursa in June 1992 at a meeting of the People's Labour Party (HEP). Two former HEP leaders were also sentenced in the same trial. The HEP, succeeded by the DEP, was closed down by the Constitutional Court in July 1993. There is concern for his health as he suffers from a chronic asthma condition. He is a prisoner of conscience.