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Published On: Wed, Oct 11th, 2017

Turkey: Court sentences WSJ reporter Ayla Albayrak to two years for terrorist propaganda

nsnbc : A court in Turkey sentences US-based Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reporter Ayla Albayrak to 2 years and 1 month in prison for “propagandizing for a terrorist organization”.

Ayla Albayrak_WSJ_Turkey_Oct 2017Ayla Albayrak who has the citizenship of both Finland and Turkey and resides currently in New York, USA, said in her statement to WSJ, that she would lodge an appeal against the decision. She also said:

“The decision shows the extent to which the authorities did not want the operations that were going on in Turkey’s southeast to be reported on. It also shows yet again, that the international media is not immune to the ongoing press crackdown in Turkey.”

Reporting the conviction of Albayrak, Thomas Grove from WSJ wrote “conviction on terrorist propaganda charges highlights government’s increased targeting of journalists”.

nsnbc international editor-in-chief Christof Lehmann noted:

“The verdict confirms once again that Turkey targets journalists with everything between intimidation and assassination. Since 2012 we have lost three journalists with involvement of Turkey, colleagues whom I have personally known who were either killed or accidented. It’s a verdict that needs to be opposed by all means. Accepting such verdicts anywhere is tantamount to promoting tyranny everywhere”.

The article that landed Albayrak’s case in court is entitled “Urban Warfare Escalates in Turkey’s Kurdish-Majority Southeast“. It was the subject of legal proceedings and was issued on Augıst 19, 2015 in the WSJ.

Together with the article, there is also a video shot in Silopi district of the predominantly Kurdish province of Şirnak in southeastern Turkey which showed the clashes between the security forces of Turkey and members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). The video also includes some interviews with mayors and the residents of Silopi. Albayrak was summoned to police station to take her deposition about the article in November 2015 and a lawsuit was brought against her in April 2016.

F/AK – nsnbc 11.10.2017

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