Since the infamous July 15th, 2016 coup attempt in Turkey, 4,560 judges and prosecutors have been dismissed from duty, allowing the judicial system to become monopolised by pro-government employees. Of those dismissed, 2,431 are currently detained on trumped up charges. One such detainee is Adem*, who after serving as a judge for ten years has spent the past 18 months in custody. I spoke to Mariam*, Adem’s wife and mother of two, to hear their story.

On July 15th, 2016 the family was moving into a new house in a new city, having been transferred for Adem’s work. Mariam was pregnant with their second child. In the late hours, her husband went to get them all something to eat, but came back empty-handed; he had learnt of the coup attempt. They were of course upset by the news, but as Mariam comments “We did not know our lives would be destroyed after that night”. They would be henceforth declared as ‘traitors’.

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