Cyprus Mail

Jailed Turkish politician’s wife sentenced over medical report

file photo: basak demirtas, wife of selahattin demirtas, jailed former co leader and presidential candidate of turkey's main pro kurdish hdp, arrives at a polling station during the presidential and parliamentary elections in diyarbakir
Basak Demirtas, wife of Selahattin Demirtas

The wife of prominent jailed Turkish opposition figure Selahattin Demirtas has been sentenced to 2-1/2 years in jail after being found to have provided inaccurate information over a date in a medical report, her lawyers said in a statement.

Lawyers for Basak Demirtas, 44, said she was sentenced by a court over an incorrect date on a medical report issued by a doctor in southeastern province of Diyarbakir in 2015, which she passed to her employer while taking sick leave.

Her husband Selahattin Demirtas, the former pro-Kurdish party leader and one of Turkey’s best-known politicians, has been in jail for nearly five years on terrorism-related charges that he denies.

The European Parliament’s Turkey rapporteur, Nacho Sanchez Amor, said her sentencing seemed “political”.

Amor wrote  on Twitter that “2.5 years of prison for a mere clerical error concerning a medical record is appalling and seems beyond common sense. It just looks so political. It gives the measure of the worrying state of Turkish judiciary.”

Basak Demirtas is free pending appeal of her conviction, which could take more than a year to finalize.

There was an error on the records that could have been corrected by examining the appointment book of the local health care centre, Demirtas’s lawyers said, adding that they will appeal the ruling.

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