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Second Prisoner Dies in Hunger Strike

July 23, 1996

ISTANBUL, Turkey (AP) _ A prisoner died today on the 65th day of a hunger strike by 1,500 inmates in Turkish prisons, becoming the second inmate to die during the protest against prison conditions.

Altan Berdan Kerimgiller, 26, died in Istanbul’s Bayrampasa prison, the Anatolia news agency reported. An inmate at another Istanbul prison, Augun Ugur at Umraniye, died Sunday.

About 1,500 leftist inmates in 33 prisons have accepted only sugared water since May. Strict new prison policies led to large-scale transfers of prisoners to remote parts of the country, ended political prisoners’ visiting rights and imposed strict rules on prisoners’ daily lives.

Two weeks ago, Turkey’s new government eased some of the restrictions, but the protesters were not satisfied.

Kerimgiller was arrested in 1993. He was awaiting trial on charges of membership in an illegal leftist group and involvement in several murders.

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