Upcoming Trials

Journalism and free speech trials: Week of July 15 – 19

This week several journalism and freedom of expression trials will resume at courts. Below is a list of this week’s hearings:

July 16th, Tuesday

  • Eighth hearing of the trial where human rights activists including Amnesty Turkey’s Honorary Chair  Taner Kılıç face “membership in an armed terrorist organization” and “aiding and abetting a terrorist organization without being a member” charges for attending a meeting titled “Protecting Human Rights Advocates: Digital Security” at Buyukada, Istanbul will take place at İstanbul 35th High Criminal Court
  • Fourth hearing of the trial where a group of Boğaziçi University students face “making propaganda for a terrorist organization” charges for protesting against another group of students who served Turkish delight to celebrate Turkey’s military operation in Afrin, Syria on 9 March 2018 will take place at İstanbul 32nd High Criminal Court. 
  • Fourth hearing of the trial where Die Welt correspondent Deniz Yücel faces “terrorist propaganda” and “provoking the people to hatred and animosity” charges will resume at İstanbul 32nd High Criminal Court. Yücel, who is represented by MLSA, was imprisoned for a year in Turkey and is now tried in absentia. The prosecutor demands up to 18 years in prison for him.

July 17th, Wednesday

  • Eleventh hearing of the trial where Şebnem Korur Fincancı, Erol Önderoğlu and Ahmet Nesin stand trial for participating in the “Editors-in-Chief On Watch” campaign launched in solidarity with Özgür Gündem daily will resume at İstanbul 13th High Criminal Court. The prosecutor had presented their final opinion in the previous hearing and demanded up to 7.5 years in prison for “provoking to commit crime,” “praising criminals or an offense,” and “terrorist propaganda” charges. A verdict is expected from this hearing.
  • Trial where since shut Özgür Gündem daily’s former Co-Editors-in-Chief Eren Keskin, Hüseyin Aykol, former Managing Editor Reyhan Çapan and journalist Hasan Başak face “terrorist propaganda” charges will resume at İstanbul 13th High Criminal Court.   

July 18th, Thursday

  • Fifth hearing of the trial where journalist Kibriye Evren faces “membership in a terrorist organization” and “terrorist propaganda” charges for her occupational activities and social media posts will resume at Diyarbakır 5th High Criminal Court. Evren is tried whilst in detention and has been detained since October 2018. 
  • Second hearing of the trial where CHP İstanbul Chair Canan Kaftancıoğlu faces “insulting the President,” “insulting a public officer in relation to their duty,” “publicly  insulting the Republic of Turkey,” “inciting the public to hate and hostility,” and “making terrorist propaganda” charges for her Twitter posts will be held at İstanbul 37th High Criminal Court.
  • Thirteenth hearing of the trial where journalist Uğur Yılmaz, whom MLSA defends in court, faces “membership in a terrorist organization” and “terrorist propaganda” charges for his journalistic activities will resume at Bitlis 2nd High Criminal Court. Yılmaz is tried whilst in detention and has been detained since July 17, 2017. 
  • Trial where journalist Can Dündar faces “making terrorist propaganda” charges for participating in the “Editors-in-Chief On Watch” campaign launched in solidarity with Özgür Gündem daily will resume at İstanbul 22nd High Criminal Court
  • Fourth hearing of the trial where since shut-down Zaman daily’s former Managing Editor Harun Çümen faces “membership in FETÖ (Fethullahist Terrorist Organization)” charges will take place at İstanbul 32nd High Criminal Court.  Çümen is tried whilst in detention.
  • Sixth hearing of the trial where filmmakers Çayan Demirel and Ertuğrul Mavioğlu face “making terrorist propaganda” charges will be held at Batman 2nd High Criminal Court. Demir and Mavioğlu face these charges for their documentary film titled Bakur (The North), which is about the lives of Kurdish guerilla members.
  • Second hearing of the Gezi Park trial will be held at the courtroom inside the Silivri Penitentiaries Campus. The case has 16 defendants and is held by the İstanbul 30th High Criminal Court. Business person Osman Kavala is tried whilst in detention whereas Yiğit Aksakoğlu, Memet Ali Alabora, Can Dündar, Ali Hakan Altınay, Mücella Yapıcı, Pınar Öğün Alabora, Çiğdem Mater, Gökçe Yılmaz, Meltem Arıkan, Hanzade Hikmet Germiyanoğlu, İnanç Ekmekci, Mine Özerden, Can Atalay, Tayfun Kahraman and Yiğit Ali Ekmekçi are tried without detention. The prosecutor demands aggravated life sentences for all 16 defendants on charges of “attempting to overthrow the Turkish government.” 

July 19th, Friday