Self-immolating Turkish worker was victim of workplace accident - union

Turkish worker who set himself on fire in front of the Turkish Parliament on Friday has been unemployed for five years after a workplace accident in 2013, Turkish newspaper Evrensel reported.

The Turkish Construction Workers’ Union said Sıtkı Aydoğmuş, the 39-year-old construction worker, had an accident when he was working for a company at a large housing project in Ankara in February 2013.

Union’s Ankara representative Murat Can Çoban told Evrensel that Aydoğmuş had no insurance, and was fired after the accident that confined him to bed for two months.

“He sued the company for damages, but there is no progress on the case after five years,” Çoban was quoted as saying.

After visiting Aydoğmuş at the hospital, Çoban told Evrensel that the worker was very depressed as he went to the parliament, but he did not intend to set himself on fire.

“He just wanted to speak with a deputy to draw attention to the financial difficulties he was facing. But when the security cornered him, he lit the fire.”