Osman Evcan who was born on 1959 in Samsun is an anarchist prisoner who spent his last 23 years in prison. İn 1992 he was sentenced to 30 years in prison with the charges of being a member of a leftist terrorist group and robbery. He was also imprisoned for 9 years between 1980-1989. Since Osman adopted anarchist ideas in 2003, he also became vegan and supports animal liberation struggles.
Osman Evcan was imprisoned in many different prisons all over the country during his conviction, he built his life fighting against authoritarian violence and especially the violence and oppression which is a systemic part of the prison’s hierarchical structure, and he still continues his fight against prison’s oppressive mentality, without giving an inch, aspiring to the right standards for anarchist, vegan, libertarian individuals.
Osman’s first barnburner act was his hunger strike in 2011 for vegan food to be available in prison which lasted 42 days. During his hunger strike the anarchists, animal liberationists from all over the World and in Turkey supported Osman’s fight to access vegan food in prison. After 42 days of hunger strike the government gave in and made regulations for the vegan and vegetarian prisoners: “Vegan or vegetarian prisoners demands will be accepted as long as its limited by subsistence allowance”. After this victory of all anarchists, animal liberationists and political prisoners, Osman continued to be in the anarchist struggle during his time in prison. He has supported the LGBT, Animal Liberation, women rights, anti imperialism struggles outside prison and he made hunger strikes to protest the animal massacre during each ‘feast of sacrifice’ every year for 3 days, he wrote articles to support nature, ethnic and different identities against government’s and comprador bourgeoisie’s raids and he still continues his political fight as much as he can from prison.
Osman Evcan was convicted of being a member of a leftist terrorist group, he self-criticized himself by saying that both capitalist and socialist system forms for being are statist and colonist formations. To quote his own words: “Veganism is not only a capitalism contrast it also includes socialism contrast. Veganism is civilization contrast. Veganism has an all out attitude against technological destruction, violence, human species alienation to nature and to itself, ecological pillage, pollution, colonialism, global warming. Act of civilization has a common history with statist forms of organizations. The idea of a state grown up process starting from primitive-simple history ongoing modernization continuum for thousands of years and transforming to nation state is a result of civilization. We cant separate This ongoing, mutually reinforcing facts that produce each other, from each other. Veganism is a radical attitude against all…”
After his hunger strike for 33 days on June 2015 he took vegan food supplies one step further and he gained the right to get vegan food from outside the prisons. The prison administration usurped this gain due to arbitrarily reasons.
After usurpation of the right to get vegan food from outside the prison by the Kandıra No: 1 Prison administration, Osman Evcan started hunger strike again on 10. November 2015 and after 39 days the prison administration gave him back his acquisitions. But soon afterwards, early in the morning Osman Evcan was exiled to Silivri L TYP prison by force and with the excuse of packness he was put in to a short stay unit which lacks a exercise yard. After he was brought to this prison by force no food was given to him for 4 days and afterwards the food given to him was not good enough for a healthy alimentation. Despite the fact that he wrote petitions tens of times, no answer was given.
Osman Evcan is jailed with ordinary prisoners. So it means that the rights that the political prisoners won through their struggles for years doesn’t exist in this prison. An example for this can be the cameras in the cells. Osman Evcan who mentions that he will never allow this kind of control and surveillance tool in his cell, tries to neutralize this practice by breaking or changing the route of the cameras. But the reaction of the prison administration to this act , is to enforce factual disciplinary punishments like visiting ban of the family members. Also as the result of disciplinary punishments he will have solitary confinement for 12 days.
In addition to these, this prisons amount of allowed books in a cell is limited only with 10 books. So if you consider the fact that in prisons it is not allowed to reach the fast information sources like internet, most of his books will consist of basic books. We can say that almost no opportunity to read something new is given to the prisoners.
Also the State is not only deciding the amount of the books you can read but also the State decides which book you are allowed to read. This is also a method to put the prisoners (the prisoners they imprison in order to regenerate and re-form) in the shape they want them to be. By making them watch the channels, read the books, magazines they want, they think they can get everything they want in the way they want, through prisoners head. Not to give the publications wanted is preclusion of the right to get free political information.
They are not giving any information to prisoners about their letters and faxes delivery status. This is paving the way for the prison authorities to not to send the letters arbitrarily. And also along with this communication ban, the obscurity situation becomes permanent and constant oppression is created. By keeping the body in a stable place, all the instruments needed to continue existing is disengaged.
With this hunger strike, Osman Evcan is showing the State that he is not obeying, surrendering, to their oppressions and practices in prison. Accepting means to destroy your own identity, your own existence. Only way to discharge political identities is to control behaviours. The outpicture of political identities are hunger strikes. And the state responds to this hunger strikes by keeping the body in a stable place and by disengaging all the instruments needed to continue existing. If The ones who must obey does not obey, the State reveals witch hunt politics visually. This is exactly what is desired to be done to Osman: silent extermination of psychology and body.
Osman’s fight is to not to let his identity to be destroyed, and to show that he will not surrender under the State’ s tools pressures. To lay down the body to death means not surrendering. It means to live without loosing your identity and to leave acquisitions to successors. Osman’s fight is more then a vegan package: it’s a war to exist.