22 Feb 2019 Lvl. 1
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Alert created on: 18 Apr 2018 n° 30/2018 Turkey

ETHA Journalists Detained and Arrested in Turkey

2 Journalists in detention
Source of threatState
CategoryDetention and imprisonment of journalists
Partner EFJ/IFJ AEJ Index
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Partner EFJ/IFJ AEJ Index
Following a police raid on 13 April 2018, several journalists working for the left-wing ETHA news agency, Semiha Şahin, Pınar Gayıp and Adil Demirci were detained by the authorities on charges of alleged propaganda on behalf of an illegal organisation. According to the news agency, the detained journalists were not allowed to inform their lawyers, friends or family members about their situation. On 17 April, ETHA journalist Adil Demirci living in Cologne (Germany) and visiting his family was formally arrested by a court in Istanbul on charges of alleged membership of an illegal organisation and doing propaganda for the same organisation. The ETHA agency confirms that all defendants are detained or arrested for their journalistic activities and believes that the government is aiming to silence political dissent. No access has been granted to the details of the dossier by the authorities invoking the secrecy of the judiciary. ETHA news agency counts also the following colleagues Isminaz Temel (editor), Havva Custan (reporter) and Ali Sönmez Kayar (reporter) put in jail and charged with heavy imprisonment sentence. The trial of Mesale Tolu, a Turkish-German ETHA reporter and translator was released in December 2017 is still ongoing.
22 Feb 2019
On 14 February 2019, the 27th High Criminal Court of Istanbul issued an interim ruling deciding to release İsminaz Temel under judicial control and adjourned the trial until 24 April 2019.
22 Feb 2019
On 14 February 2019, the 25th High Criminal Court of Istanbul issued an interim ruling, releasing Adil Demirci. The court imposed on Demirci a ban on leaving Istanbul. The next hearing in the case will take place on 30 April 2019.
08 Nov 2018
On 31 October 2018, the 32nd Heavy Penal Court in İstanbul ruled to release on probation reporter Ali Sönmez Kayar. An international travel ban has also been imposed on the defendant by the court.
22 Jul 2018
On 17 July 2018, a court issued an interim decision and released reporters Havva Cuştan, İsmail Geçer, Meral Tatar, Onur Binbir and Özgen Saadet, while ordering to keep editor İsminaz Temel, in jail.
20 Apr 2018
On 19 April 2018, detained ETHA journalists Adil Demirci, Semiha Şahin and Pınar Gayıp were arraigned on charges of membership of an illegal organisation and propaganda.
18 Apr 2018
OSCE Media Freedom Representative worried about the arrest Etkin Haber Ajans reporter Adil Demirci, on terrorism charges and continued detention of journalists Semiha Şahin, Pınar Gayıp.
Journalists in detention

Currently in detention (2):

Semiha Şahin and Pınar Gayıp
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