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May-24-2014 00:17TweetFollow @OregonNews
After 4 Years in Coma Mavi Marmara Victim Passes AwaySalem-News.com
The death toll has now reached 10. Ten humanitarians killed in international waters.
(ISTANBUL, Turkey) - Mavi Marmara activist Uğur Süleyman Söylemez, who was heavily injured by the Israeli attack on May 31, 2010 and was left in a coma for four years, has passed away today at 51 years of age.
Mavi Marmara was on its way to bringing humanitarian aid to Gaza in May 2010, when Israeli soldiers attacked the ship in international waters leaving 9 dead and 30 wounded. The death toll has now reached 10 after Söylemez died in a hospital where he was receiving treatment.
Soon after the attack on Mavi Marmara, Söylemez was announced to be among the killed passengers, but it was later found out that he was gravely wounded by at least one bullet shot into his head. One of the flotilla passengers recalled the moment Söylemez was shot:
“The incidents were unbelievable… Everything was shocking but I witnessed the most shocking incident on the lower deck. I was helping the wounded. A brother named Süleyman had been shot in the front of his head and fallen onto the floor on his back, fracturing the back of his skull. He was lying on his side; two people were supporting him.
"The doctors had warned that if he lay on his back, his lungs would be filled with blood, causing him to die immediately. While we were trying to keep him alive, several other passengers were cooling him down with fans they made from cardboard. Blood was continuously coming out of his mouth.
"I was wiping his mouth and holding his hands on one hand and replacing the bloody towels covering his wounds and trying to speak to him on the other hand. We used dozens of towels trying to stop his bleeding. Thank God he recovered from death.
"The Israelis carried him and the other wounded activists to the helicopters in brutal manner. Brother Süleyman is now with his family in Ankara but in coma. I will never forget him.” Fatima Mohamadi (Lawyer/USA)
A merchant by profession, Uğur Süleyman Söylemez is married to Tuğba Söylemez with three children named Ahmet (born 1988), Zeynep Kübra (1991), and Fatma (1997).
Söylemez, who assisted people in need through various social charity events, is known as a trustworthy man who keeps his promises, and who is concerned about humanitarian issues.
“He has always had special interest in Palestine,” Mrs. Söylemez says as she describes her husband.
Music video for "Song for Mavi Marmara" by David Rovics
Video produced by Bonnie King (Salem-News.com).
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