A Turkish courtroom has convicted journalist Can Dündar on espionage and terror-related fees for a information report.
The courtroom in Istanbul on Wednesday discovered Dündar responsible of “obtaining secret documents for espionage” and “knowingly and willingly aiding a terrorist organization without being a member,” sentencing him to a complete of 27½ years in jail.
Dündar’s legal professionals didn’t attend the listening to in protest, saying the proceedings violated the foundations of honest trial and impartiality.
Dündar, the previous editor-in-chief of opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet, was on trial for a 2015 story accusing Turkey’s intelligence service of illegally sending weapons to Syria. Dündar fled to Germany in 2016 and was being tried in absentia.
The story included a 2014 video that confirmed males in police uniforms and civilian clothes unscrewing bolts to open the vehicles and unpacking containers. Later photos present vehicles stuffed with mortar rounds. The Related Press can’t affirm the authenticity of the video.
The information report claimed that the Turkish intelligence service and Turkey’s president didn’t permit the prosecutor to start an investigation into arms smuggling.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was infuriated by the publication, submitting felony fees in opposition to Dündar and Ankara bureau chief Erdem Gul. Erdogan mentioned the vehicles carried support to Turkmen teams in Syria and that Dündar would “pay a high price.”
Turkey later interfered straight within the Syrian civil battle, launching 4 cross-border operations.
Information report at centre of fees
Dündar is accused of aiding the community of U.S.-based Fethullah Gulen, who the federal government says masterminded Turkey’s 2016 failed coup. The prosecutor who ordered the vehicles stopped and others, together with navy officers, have been charged with hyperlinks to Gulen. Gulen denies the allegations and stays in Pennsylvania.
Turkey’s official Anadolu information company reported that the courtroom thought Dündar’s information report aimed to current Turkey as a “country that supports terror” domestically and internationally. The courtroom mentioned that notion helped Gulen’s community, which used the story in its personal publications.
Dündar and Gul have been arrested in 2015 and spent three months in pre-trial detention. In 2016, a courtroom convicted them to 5 to 6 years in jail for “obtaining and revealing secret documents to be used for espionage.” Dündar was attacked outdoors the courthouse on the identical day as the decision however was unhurt.
After Dündar appealed the conviction, the Supreme Courtroom of Appeals overturned the sentences in 2018 and ordered a retrial with harsher sentences. The retrial started in 2019.
Dündar’s property in Turkey is within the means of being seized.
Reporters With out Borders ranks Turkey at 154 out of 180 nations in its 2020 Press Freedom Index.