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Istanbul Court issues new arrest warrants for journalists due to pressure by pro-AKP media figures

First session of trial for the case of the musician Atilla Tas and journalists who were accused  to be close to Fethullah Gulen fellowship who were arrested upon the coup attempt in July, took 5 days last week.

Pleas and statements about releases were listened during the session handled by Istanbul 25th Criminal Court .

Public procesuter whose opinion was asked about statements, stated his opinion towards releasing of 12 defendants along with musician Atilla Tas. Upon his statement, Atilla Tas obtained permission to speak , said that “ Pls. do not leave us alone. We love you”. Session is going on with reception of the defendants and their lawyers requests.

Istanbul Court first ruled for release of 21 journalists, before issuing a new arrest warrant

Prosecutor asked for their release, and Istanbul 25th Heavy Penal Court ruled for the release of a total of 21 suspects, including famous singer Atilla Taş, in the “media leg” case. Right after the news broke, pro-AKP media talking heads and “journalists” launched a campaign against journalists’ release. And by Friday night,  the detention warrants issued and released journalists re-arrested, before leaving the prison.

Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office on March 31 issued the warrants for Atilla Taş, Ali Akkuş, Hüseyin Aydın, Murat Aksoy, Mustafa Erkan Acar, Seyid Kılıç and Yetkin Yıldız, who were being tried in a case into the “media leg” of the followers of the U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen and for whom release decision was issued for on March 31, over a case into the July 15, 2016, failed coup attempt.
By the same night, following hundreds of tweets by tens of leading AKP media figures and personalities, the detention warrants were issued over “attempting to remove the constitutional order” and “attempting to remove the government of the Turkish Republic,” while the reason for detentions was cited as the evidence regarding the suspects, the characteristics of the offence charged and the risk of fleeing.

As a part of the investigation, in which seven warrants were issued for, detention warrants were previously issued for Gökçe Fırat Çulhaoğlu, Yakup Çetin, Bünyamin Köseli, Cihan Acar, Abdullah Kılıç and Oğuz Usluer.

Some highlights of the statement reflected to trial records are below from last week:

Murat Aksoy

Journalist Murat Aksoy : “I want justice not for myself, but for my 2 children whom I can not see in the last 7.5 months.” Aksoy also reminded that he wrote articles for Yeni Safak newspaper about government’s wrong policy during Gezi Park incident and added : I was fired from Yeni Safak due the critizing articles along with speechs I made on A News channel, TGRT and CNNTURK on 25 Dec 2013.During this period that we would have our 2nd baby. Beside that a tumor was located behind right eye of my wife. During this period, due to our economical conditions, I accepted the job offer from Millet Newspaper. I prepared tw program for Halk Tv. If it is a crime to work in shut down newspapers, there should be some other journalists here beside me”

Muhammet Sait Kuloglu

Muhammet Sait Kuloglu who was accused to share 493 pcs of Fuat Avni’s tweets, forwarded his question “ 100s of news about Fuat Avni  were prepared by newspapers Yeni Safak and Akit . There are 91 news in Sabah newspaper. Where are the editors of these newspapers?”Presiding Judge asked him if he would request to make us of effective repentance law and he responsed that he was regretful to be a journalist in Turkey.

Emre Soncan

Reporter of shut down Zaman newspaper, Emre Soncan : “We, 13 persons were kept in cells designed 3 persons and I wanted to die when I was brought to the jail due to dispensation from life. I started thinking that this world is hell of another world’s. I would like to be absolved by judges who does not button up their cassocks”. He also stated that he never became a part of any cult or oganisation and also added that he holded Prime Minister Office’s accreditation card till 2012.

Hanim Busra Erdal

Reporter of shut down Zaman newspaper writer Hanim Bursa Erdal stated that there is no crime factor in his articles and added : “I am an organic journalist. I am a person who contacted various people.

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