Nine Kurdish journalists released from jail at first hearing of trial

After approximately seven months in jail, nine journalists working for Kurdish media outlets have been released from jail at the first hearing of the trial in which they are accused of terrorism charges.

Duvar English

An Ankara court on May 16 released nine of the ten jailed journalists who were arrested on Nov. 29, 2022 on terrorism charges.

Twelve journalists from Mezopotamya Agency (MA) and Jinnews are standing trial as part of an investigation launched by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office on Nov. 20, 2022. Of the 12 journalists, 10 were arrested on Nov. 29, 2022.

During the first hearing of the case on May 16, the Ankara 4th Heavy Penal Court ruled for the continuation of journalist Hamdullah Bayram’s imprisonment, while releasing the nine journalists.

Following their release, the journalists made a statement in front of the Sincan Prison. Mezopotamya Agency’s editor-in-chief Diren Yurtsever said they had told in court that “Kurdish media was being targeted for not showing obedience.”

“We are making news stories with regards to the agenda of Turkey, the Kurdish problem. And this has disturbed the rulership. We will turn the darkness into light. We will continue to do journalism from where we left off. As is the custom of the free press, we have repelled these attacks. We will continue to write in every circumstance,” Yurtsever said.