TURKEY

CHP lawmaker suffers heart spasm during protest march

CHP LAWMAKER SUFFERS HEART SPASM DURING PROTEST MARCH

A lawmaker of Turkey's main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) had a heart spasm on Friday during a protest march from Ankara to Istanbul, a party official said.

Hüseyin Yıldız, deputy of the Aegean Aydın city, suffered the spasm as the march -- which started after a party deputy got 25 years in prison for espionage -- passed by northwestern Sakarya province on its sixteenth day.

According to the party's Deputy Chairman Veli Ağbaba, Yıldız was taken to Sakarya Training and Research Hospital and may be later transferred to a hospital in Ankara

Yıldız's condition remains unclear.

Last week, another party supporter died after he suffered a suspected heart attack during the protest march from Ankara to Istanbul.

The march was launched by CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu following the jailing of party lawmaker Enis Berberoğlu, who was sentenced to 25 years for giving a newspaper information on the transportation of arms to Syria.

Kılıçdaroğlu intends to complete the 450 km (280 miles) walk from the capital to Maltepe prison in Istanbul, where Berberoğlu is being held, in 24 days.

He is accompanied by CHP deputies and supporters, as well as family members.

Berberoğlu was convicted of revealing state secrets by passing images to the Cumhuriyet newspaper, of the Turkish intelligence agency National Intelligence Organization trucks en route to Syria, in January 2014.

He is the first CHP deputy to be imprisoned in recent years. Around a dozen lawmakers from the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) are currently jailed, mostly awaiting trial over alleged links to the PKK terror group.

In May last year, parliament voted to strip lawmakers facing trial of their parliamentary immunity.

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