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Six Journalists Sentenced to Life Imprisonment Over Turkey’s Failed Coup

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A court in Istanbul has sentenced six Turkish journalists accused of involvement in the attempted coup of 2016 to life in prison.

Among those convicted on Friday were the former editor-in-chief of the Taraf newspaper, Ahmet Altan, and his brother Mehmet Altan, a professor of Economics and journalist. Prominent journalist Nazli Ilicak was also sentenced.

The Altan brothers had been charged with passing coded messages on a television talk show a day prior to the abortive military coup on July 15, 2016. Aimed at removing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

In January, Turkey’s highest court has instructed the released of Mehmet Altan but a lower court refused to implement that order.

Three other defendants were handed life sentences for trying to abolish the Constitution and overthrow the government.

The Turkish government has repeatedly blamed the failed coup on the US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, the journalists were accused of having links to Gulen. All accusations have been denied by Gulen.

Defendants were charged with belonging to a terror organization and attempts to subvert Turkey’s Constitution.

A Turkish court had earlier accepted an indictment on Friday, seeking up to 18 years in prison a German-Turkish journalist Deniz Yucel, releasing him from the custody of the authorities pending a trial.

 

 

Neba Benson,

BaretaNews Foreign Correspondent/Analyst

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