Journalist Canan Coşkun and documentary film-maker Kazım Kızıl were detained in Giresun’s Eynesil district on 13 November while following the work of a Parliamentary Commission investigating the suspicious death of 11-year old Eynesil local Rabia Naz Vatan.
Their detention was portrayed by the prosecutor’s office to be in relation to an altercation between the little girl’s father, Şaban Vatan and Mürsel Küçükal, a witness who changed his testimony mid-investigation. The prosecutor has accused Coşkun of “blackmailing, threat, assault with intent and depriving a person of his liberty.” We understand that Kızıl faces the same charges.
Taking two journalists who were in Eynesil to investigate the circumstances of a child’s death, which have remained shady in every respect; their spending the night at a detention center in relation with these charges for which there is no concrete evidence of their involvement and being interrogated on their journalistic activities is quite clearly an attempt to discourage all journalists from trying to shed light on the death of Rabia Naz.
MLSA demands the immediate release of both journalists and highlights that no police officer or prosecutor is in a position to try and stop journalists from investigating deaths of small children or the alleged crimes of those in power.