The Mesopotamia News Agency’s (MA) editor Sedat Yılmaz and the Dicle Fırat Journalists Association’ Co-Chair (DFG) Dicle Müftüoğlu, who were taken into custody, have been brought to Ankara. Through their lawyers, the journalists sent a message calling on professional organizations and their colleagues to stand in solidarity with them and defend journalism.
Two days after the detention of five journalists as part of the criminal investigation led by the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, Mesopotamia Agency Editor Sedat Yılmaz and Dicle Fırat Journalists Association Co-Chair Dicle Müftüoğlu were also taken into custody as part of another criminal investigation led by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office.
Journalists Yılmaz and Müftüoğlu were brought to Ankara after a 15-hour road journey. According to the Mesopotamia News Agency, the journalists were handcuffed throughout the journey and were not given any food for 24 hours. It is also reported that Yılmaz was beaten and kicked in the head by the Ankara police to whom he was handed over.
The detained journalists sent messages through their lawyers.
Yılmaz: I am cheerful and strong
“Dear colleagues and coworkers,
I am perfectly fine, cheerful, and strong. It is out of question for us to bend our pen to drug lords who act like mafia, and we cannot bend our pens. I expect you to make the solidarity stronger. I also saw my friend Dicle Müftüoğlu and she too sends you her regards.
Currently, both my wife and my sister are in custody with me. We had to leave our 13-year-old daughter with our friends in Diyarbakır. Greetings and love to you all.”
Müftüoğlu: Our pursuit of truth continues despite those who try to criminalize us
“As successors of a tradition that has been continuing for more than 30 years, they are trying to silence us once again. Just two days ago, five journalists were arrested in an operation in Diyarbakır. Despite those who have been trying to criminalize us with similar operations for years, our pursuit of truth continues. No obstruction can shadow the truth. We call on all our colleagues to defend journalism against all these operations which attempt to silence us.”
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