02 Nov 2018 Lvl. 1
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Alert created on: 30 Dec 2015 n° 2/2016 Turkey

Murder of Syrian Journalist Naji Jerf in Turkey

Source of threatUnknown
CategoryImpunity for murder
Partner RSF EFJ/IFJ Index
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Partner RSF EFJ/IFJ Index
Naji Jerf, a 38 year-old Syrian journalist, was gunned down in a busy street of Gaziantep (Southeastern Turkey) on Sunday 27 December 2015, in broad daylight. Jerf was the founder and editor of the opposition magazine Henta and had made several films about atrocities by both Islamic Slate and the Syrian government, including his film « ISIL in Aleppo », a documentary on the Islamic State’s execution of many Syrian activists.
Jerf had just obtained a visa for France and he was expected to leave the country in January.
In his visa application letter, he explained he was facing reiterated threats on himself and his family since the release of his documentary in December and his willingness to go to France with his family for protection. So far, it is not clear who is responsible for this assassination.
Updates
02 Nov 2018
On 2nd November 2018, the partner organisations of the platform decided to transfer this alert to the category of ‘impunity for murder’, based on their assessment of the lack of sufficient progress in the investigation of this case.
14 Jun 2017
On 9 June 2017, a court in the south-eastern province of Gaziantep passed two life sentences on Yusef Hamed Al-Shefreihi , one for Naji Jerf’s murder and one for “trying to overthrow the constitutional order”. Three suspects – Farag Al-Hussein, Ali Cerkez and Reyad Matar – were acquitted over a lack of evidence. Media freedom advocacy organisations criticised the trial for failing to involve the family and for leaving many questions unanswered including the motive for the murder, how it was carried out, the convicted murderer's profile and the possible involvement of other individuals.
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