07 Mar 2017 Lvl. 1
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Alert created on: 30 Aug 2016 Turkey

Police Raided Azadiya Welat Newspaper, at least 23 Staff Members Detained

Source of threatState
CategoryDetention and imprisonment of journalists
Partner EFJ/IFJ AEJ CPJ Index
No state reply yet
Partner EFJ/IFJ AEJ CPJ Index
On 28 August 2016, the police raided the main office of the Kurdish-language daily newspaper Azadiya Welat based in Diyarbakir. According to media reports, at least 23 staff members of the newspaper have been detained at Diyarbakir Police headquarters following the raid, the names are : Yasemin Sayın, Hayat Yılmaz, Ahmet Kızılay, Arap Turan, Berxwedan Tulpar, Sürreya Dal, Zeynep İzgi, İbrahim Bayram, Engin Özelçi, Ahmet Boltan, Ceylan İpek, Mehmet Emin Kaya, Ziyan Karahan, Veysi Altın, Ercan Yeltaş, Azime Tarhan, Serdal Polat, Cengiz Aslan, Ferit Toprak, Mehmet Hüseyin Şahin, Mehmet Aydın, Pusat Bulut and Mehmet Emin Akgün. 13 of them were released on the same day after interrogation.
Dicle News Agency reported that the police justified the operation by the notice they received that “there are [illegal] organizational meetings held”. Phones and IDs of the staff members have been seized.
Updates
01 Mar 2017
As of 21 February 2017, all journalists detained had been released.
29 Oct 2016
A state of emergency decree shut Azadiya Welat permanently in October 2016.
18 Oct 2016
As of 11 October 2016, Arap Turan and Ferit Toprak were put under arrest. Zeynep İzgi, İbrahim Bayram, Engin Özelçi, Pusat Bulut and Serdal Polat were released on probation. 14 other journalists were released.
Follow-ups
15 Feb 2017
Human Rights Commissioner : Urgent measures are needed to restore freedom of expression in Turkey
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