Turkish journalist Mehmet Gündem was detained early on Wednesday while trying to flee to Greece to avoid the ongoing government crackdown against the dissent in the country. An Edirne court reportedly sent him to prison later the same day.
Gündem, who used to work as a columnist for the Milliyet daily, was initially detained on Nov. 1, 2017, along with 44 colleagues as part of an operation against the Journalists’ and Writers’ Foundation (JWF), which was closed down in the aftermath of the coup attempt over alleged affiliation with the Gülen group.
He was accused of using ByLock, which, Turkish authorities believe, a communication tool among alleged followers of the Gülen group. Tens of thousands of people, including civil servants, police officers, soldiers, businessmen, and even housewives, have either been dismissed or arrested for using ByLock since a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016.
Upon his conditional release from prison, he reportedly attempted to flee the country on Tuesday morning. He was however caught by the Turkish police at the border and sent to prison.