İstanbul – First hearing of the trial where Die Welt journalist Deniz Yücel faces “insulting a public official” charges due to a tweet he posted on February 20, 2019 was held at İstanbul 24th Criminal Court of First Instance today.
While Yücel did not attend the hearing, he was represented in court by his lawyer Veysel Ok. Lawyer Ok noted that his client lives in Germany and stated that they would present his address to the court. Ok demanded the necessary instructions for taking Yücel’s defense statement to be sent there. The court accepted this request and adjourned the trial until 11 June 2020.
The concerned tweet is about the prosecutor who was leading the investigation on Osman Kavala, the same prosecutor who accused Deniz Yücel of terrorist propaganda for an interview he conducted while misrepresenting the language of Yücel’s interview. The statements that are included in the tweet are also included in the defense statement that Yücel submitted to the court last May in relation to the main trial where he is accused of terrorist propaganda and inciting the public to hatred.
The indictment was drafted by prosecutor Celal Salıdere, who demands Yücel to be punished pursuant to Turkish Penal Code’s Article 125, which regulates insult. İstanbul Vice Chief Prosecutor Hasan Yılmaz appears as the injured party in the file.
Osman Kavala ve diğerleri hakkındaki “Gezi iddianamesini” ve benzeri iddianameleri düzenleyen adamlar, sadece savcı kılıfında gözü dönmüş militanlar değiller. Aynı zamanda şeyler. Yani baya baya şeyler. Bakınız: pic.twitter.com/63QXap2AYB
— Deniz Yücel (@Besser_Deniz) February 20, 2019
Translation of the tweet:
Men who draft indictments such as the “Gezi indictment” on Osman Kavala et al are not just militants blinded by their lust for power. They are also very, you know… I mean really very nasty piece of work. See:
I know Istanbul Vice Chief Prosecutor Hasan Yılmaz who ‘runs’ the Osman Kavala investigation very well. He was the man who told me, “You have referred to Abdullah Öcalan as the ‘Commander-in-Chief of the PKK” during my interrogation. After he showed me the print out of the article published in Die Welt in German, I showed the phrase and said, “It says here ‘PKK-Chef’. One doesn’t need to speak any German to understand that the Turkish word for ‘chef’ in German is ‘chief’ and not ‘commander-in-chief.’” He just gave me a blank look and wrote the so-called ‘indictment’ without taking my correction into consideration. Much later, when a former police chief whom I met in prison told me that “he is the dumbest prosecutor at Çağlayan courthouse,” what choice did I have but to agree? (The Gulenist prosecutors were violating the law more stealthily, which is a different story.)