In response to recent claims that special teams are no longer guarding İmrali Island in the Marmara Sea where outlawed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan is imprisoned, the Justice Ministry released details about the island's security operations yesterday.
Ocalan has been serving a life sentence on the island since his capture in Kenya in 1999.
Confirming that there had been a change in the prison's security arrangements, the statement said internal security at the prison is still in the hands of staff from the Justice Ministry's General Directorate of Prisons and Detention Centers.
The General Staff had transferred the task of ensuring the coastal security of the island to the Coast Guard Command (SGK) from the Naval Forces Command, the statement said.
The external security of the island has been transferred to a special team from the Gendarmerie General Command from the General Staff's Special Forces Comman, Cihan News Agency said.
Justice Ministry Undersecretary Ahmet Kahraman dismissed recent claims that he had met with the jailed PKK leader at İmrali Prison. Responding to questions from reporters prior to a meeting with the Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) yesterday, Kahraman said: “You know all prisons are connected to the Justice Ministry and I am a Justice Ministry undersecretary. I can visit any prison because of my post, but I did not go to İmrali.”