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27 February

Journalists in State of Emergency - 124

BirGün editor Ekici sentenced to 6 years and 3 months in jail after 7 months in pretrial detention; court orders his release on judicial control terms

Burak Ekici, an editor for the BirGün daily, who has been in pretrial detention since August 2017, was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months in prison for “membership in a terrorist organization” by the 32nd High Criminal Court of Istanbul on February 27 at what was the second hearing of his trial. The court also ruled to release Ekici on judicial control terms, including a travel ban imposed on the journalist, in consideration of the seven months he has spent in pre-trial detention.
P24 monitored the hearing in the courtroom at the Istanbul Courthouse in Çağlayan.
Lawyer İbrahim Pehlivan said during the hearing that the allegation that Ekici had the encrypted messaging application “ByLock” on his phone, purported to be used exclusively by the Fethullah Gülen network, was disproved by an expert report submitted to the court. According to the indictment, Ekici’s phone sent out “217 ByLock signals,” but Pehlivan said the expert report showed serious mistakes in the technical data in the indictment. “We think that the data in the files cannot constitute evidence. The mere presence of ByLock signals means no substantial evidence,” he said.
Pehlivan also noted that the Turkish Supreme Court of Appeals held in a recent decision concerning ByLock that the use of the application should be supported with other evidence to be valid evidence for membership in the Fethullah Gülen network, referred to by Turkish authorities as “FETÖ.” “None of them are found in this file,” he said.
Ekici also noted the discrepancies regarding the ByLock data revealed by the expert report. “I am a socialist. FETÖ has always been FETÖ for me,” he said.
Ekici was arrested on August 10, 2017, along with 10 other journalists, on the allegation that they were ByLock users. Ten of the 11 journalists, including Ekici, were jailed pending trial.
The release of Ekici on February 27 brought the number of journalists in prison in Turkey to 155. A detailed list can be found here.
Columnist Ali Ünal remains behind bars after 2nd hearing
Ali Ünal, a former columnist for the shuttered Zaman daily, who has been in pretrial detention since August 2016, appeared on February 27 at the second hearing of a trial in which he stands accused of “attempting to overthrow the Constitutional order,” “establishing and running a terrorist organization” and “membership in a terrorist organization” charges.
The indictment seeks two aggravated life sentences and an additional 29.5 years in prison for Ünal. Evidence against Ünal includes 17 of his newspaper columns and various spoken remarks. His cell phone, seized by authorities during his arrest, is subject to examination as part of the case.
The Uşak 2nd High Criminal Court ruled at the end of Tuesday’s hearing for the continuation of Ünal’s detention and adjourned the trial to May 10 to allow extra time for the examination of Ünal’s cell phone.
Journalist Muhammet Doğru handed down 8 years in prison
Muhammet Doğru, a reporter for the shuttered Dicle news agency (DİHA), was given a suspended prison sentence on February 26 at the final hearing of a case in which he was on trial alongside 12 other co-defendants at the Sakarya 2nd High Criminal Court.
Doğru was sentenced to six years and three months in prison for “membership in a terrorist organization” and an additional two years and three months for “conducting propaganda for a terrorist organization” at the final hearing of his trial.
Doğru was among the 13 co-defendants in the case. The court suspended the sentences.
Özgür Toplum employee Kılıç appears in first hearing
On February 26, Fahrettin Kılıç, an employee of the Özgür Toplum magazine, who has been in pretrial detention since March 2017, appeared in the first hearing of the trial against him on “membership in a terrorist organization” charges at the Adana 13th High Criminal Court.
The trial was adjourned to May 23 when Kılıç requested to give his defense statement in Kurdish but an interpreter was not available, the Mezopotamya news agency reported.
Özgür Toplum employee detained in Adana
Mevlüt Gür, an Adana-based employee for the Özgür Toplum magazine, was taken into custody in Adana on February 25.
Gür was detained by the police as he and another person, an unidentified woman who was also taken into custody along with Gür, were walking on a street in the Seyhan district on grounds of “possession of a banned publication” and providing “financial aid to a terrorist organization.”
Journalists in prison in Turkey (as of February 27, 2018)
1                Abdulkadir Turay, DİHA reporter
2                Abdullah Kaya, DİHA
3                Abdullah Kılıç, Habertürk
4                Abdullah Özyurt, Zaman reporter
5                Abdulvahap İş (Freelance journalist)
6                Ahmet Altan
7                Ahmet Feyzullah Özyurt
8                Ahmet Memiş, Gazeteci, Haberdar news website
9                Ahmet Metin Sekizkardeş, Zaman journalist
10              Ahmet Şık, Cumhuriyet reporter
11              Ahmet Turan Alkan, Zaman
12              Ahmet Yavaş, TRT (Erzurum)
13              Akın Atalay, Pres. of Cumhuriyet Foundation Executive Board
14              Alaattin Güner, Cihan media director
15              Ali Ahmet Böken, TRT News coordinator
16              Ali Aşikar – Azadiya Welat
17              Ali Babür Boysal, Zaman page designer
18              Ali Bulaç, former Zaman columnist
19              Ali Sönmez Kayar, ETHA reporter
20              Ali Ünal, Zaman columnist
21              Ali Yüce, TRT Radio broadcasts chief
22              Arafat Dayan, Demokratik Ulus
23              Aslı Ceren Aslan, Özgür Gelecek
24              Ayhan Demir, Çaldıran News Agency
25              Ayşe Nazlı Ilıcak
26              Ayşenur Parıldak, Zaman, Haberdar
27              Aytekin Gezici, journalist/writer
28              Aziz İstegün, Diyarbakır Zaman representative
29              Barış Ceyhan, Özgürlükçü Demokrasi employee
30              Bayram Kaya, Zaman reporter
31              Behram Kılıç
32              Beytullah Özdemir, Zaman Düzce bureau chief
33              Burçin Dokgöz, former Zaman and Çorum reporter
34              Cemal Azmi Kalyoncu, Journalists and Writers’ Foundation
35              Ceren Taşkın, Hatay'ın Sesi
36              Cuma Kaya, Zaman
37              Cuma Ulus, Millet newspaper’s publications coordinator
38              Cüneyt Seza Özkan, Samanyolu TV
39              Çetin Kurşun, Azadiya Welat
40              Emin Demir, Freelancer
41              Emre Soncan, Zaman defense reporter
42              Ercan Gün, Fox TV
43              Erdal Süsem, Eylül magazine editor
44              Erdal Şen, former Meydan managing editor
45              Erdoğan Alayamut, Dihaber reporter
46              Erol Yüksel (TRT News Department vice president))
47              Erol Zavar, Odak magazine, owner and newsroom director
48              Fahrettin Kılıç, Özgür Toplum
49              Faruk Akkan, Cihan news agency
50              Ferhat Çiftçi, Azadiya Welat Gaziantep bureau chief
51              Fevzi Yazıcı
52              Gökçe Fırat Çulhaoğlu, Türksolu columnist
53              Gurbet Çakar, Hevi women’s magazine
54              Gültekin Avcı
55              Habip Güler, Zaman reporter
56              Hakan Aksel, TRT producer-director
57              Hakan Ergün, Azadiya Welat and Özgür Gündem distributor
58              Hakan Taşdelen
59              Halil İbrahim Mert, TRT (Erzurum)
60              Hamit Dilbahar, Azadiya Welat columnist
61              Hamza Günerigök, TRT
62              Hanım Büşra Erdal, Zaman reporter and columnist
63              Hasan Duman, Özgürlükçü Demokrasi distributor
64              Hatice Duman, Atılım newspaper’s owner and managing editor
65              Havva Cuştan, ETHA reporter
66              Hayati Yıldız, Azadiya Welat
67              Haydar Ergül, Demokratik Modernite editor
68              Hidayet Karaca, Samanyolu Media Group President
69              Hüseyin Aydın, Cihan reporter
70              Hüseyin Turan, Zaman columnist
71              İbrahim Kareyeğen, responsible editor for Zaman
72              İdris Okur, Cihan New Agency Çorum reporter
73              İdris Sayılgan, DİHA
74              İdris Yılmaz
75              İshak Karakaş, Hakın Nabzı editor in chief
76              İsmail Efe, local press advisor in İzmir
77              İsmail Ersan, Anatolia news agency
78              İsminaz Temel, ETHA editor
79              Kamuran Sunbat, DİHA Çukurova reporter (formerly)
80              Kemal Demir, TV 10
81              Kemal Özer, Evrensel
82              Kenan Karavil, Radyo Dünya editor-in-chief
83              Mehmet Ali Ay
84              Mehmet Altan
85              Mehmet Baransu, Taraf columnist/reporter
86              Mehmet Dener, Şanlıurfa.com editor-in-chief
87              Mehmet Güleş, DİHA
88              Mehmet Gündem
89              Mehmet Kuru, Zaman Eskişehir reporter
90              Mehmet Özdemir, Zaman columnist
91              Meltem Oktay, DİHA reporter
92              Mete Cem Bahtiyar, former BirGün reporter
93              Mikail Barut, Özgür Halk former editor
94              Miktat Algül, Mezitli FM General Publications Coordinator
95              Mizgin Çay – Radyo Karacadağ
96              Muhammet Taşçılar, Şanlıurfa.com editor-in-chief
97              Muhsin Pilgir, Zaman and Cihan news agency
98              Murat Avcıoğlu, Zaman
99              Murat Çapan, Nokta
100            Murat Dağdeviren (Demokrat Gebze owner)
101            Murat Sabuncu, Editor-in- Chief
102            Mustafa Erkan Acar, Bugün news editor,
103            Mustafa Gök, Ankara bureau chief for Ekmek ve Adalet magazine
104            Mustafa Ünal, Zaman
105            Mutlu Çölgeçen, Millet, newsroom coordinator
106            Mutlu Özay, Cihan reporter
107            Mümtazer Türköne, Zaman columnist
108            Nadir Yücel, Çorum Yıldız (local) Editor-in-Chief
109            Nedim Türfent,DİHA
110            Nizamettin İzgi (Batman Newspaper’s owner)
111            Nuh Gönültaş
112            Nuri Durna, TRT
113            Nuri Yeşil, Azadiya Welat Dersim bureau chief
114            Nurullah Kaya, G.antep Zaman representative
115            Oğuz Usluer, Habertürk former broadcasts coordinator
116            Osman Yakut, Zaman Antalya
117            Ömer Oruç, Cihan newspaper
118            Özcan Keser (TRT reporter)
119            Rabia Özkaya, Özgür Halk
120            Ramazan Alkan, Yeni Akit reporter
121            Resul Cengiz, Denizli reporter with Zaman
122            Sadık Demir – Radyo Karacadağ
123            Sait Gürka Tuzlu, Cihan reporter
124            Salih Erbekler – Radyo Karacadağ
125            Sami Tunca, Mücadele Birliği magazine Managing Editor
126            Seda Taşkın, Mesopotamia News Agency reporter
127            Semiha Mete, Özgürlükçü Demokrasi reporter and distributor
128            Serhat Şeftali, Zaman regional bureau chief for the Med region
129            Serkan Aydemir, Bitlis Aktüel reporter
130            Sertan Önal, Halkın Günlüğü reporter
131            Seyid Kılıç, TRT News
132            Seyithan Akyüz, Azadiya Welat Adana bureau chief
133            Şahabettin Demir, DİHA reporter
134            Şahin Alpay, Zaman columnist
135            Şeref Yılmaz, Irmak TV
136            Şerife Oruç, DİHA reporter
137            Tahsin Kürklü, Zaman – head of Logistics Department
138            Togay Okay, Özgür Gelecek
139            Tuncer Çetinkaya, Zaman Antalya
140            Turgut Usul, TRT reporter
141            Ufuk Şanlı, former Vatan columnist
142            Ünal Tanık, Rota Haber editor-in-chief
143            Vahit Yazgan, İzmir Zaman bureau chief
144            Veli Büyükşahin, TV10 executive
145            Veli Haydar Güleç, TV10 executive
146            Yakup Çetin, Zaman reporter
147            Yakup Şimşek, Zaman, marketing director
148            Yalçın Güler, TRT (Erzurum)
149            Yasir Kaya, Fenerbahçe TV, formerly
150            Yener Dönmez, Habervaktim news website
151            Yetkin Yıldız, Aktif Haber website editor
152            Yılmaz Kahraman, Özgür Halk editor
153            Zafer Özsoy
154            Zehra Doğan, Jinha
155            Ziya Ataman, DİHA reporter
For a full list of all the imprisoned journalists in Turkey, visit this spreadsheet. Lists of all of the foundations and associations as well as media outlets shut down can also be found at the same link, although on different tabs of the same spreadsheet.


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