Prosecuting workers solely on the basis of their work employment is not ruling based on facts but a politically motivated decision, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) said with regards to conviction of Zaman journalists.
“Our colleagues from Zaman newspaper did not take part to the coup attempt and have condemned it afterwards. Prosecuting workers solely on the basis of their work employment is not ruling based on facts but a politically motivated decision. The Turkish authorities must drop all the charges and release the journalists and columnists”,EFJ said July 9.
Six journalists and columnists have been heavily sentenced to prison by a court in Istanbul for alleged membership to an armed illegal terrorist organization. The suspects were all working for the late Zaman daily newspaper banned by the Turkish authorities following the failed coup attempt of July 15, 2016.
The court found six journalists guilty of “being a member of an armed organization” based on their articles and opinions expressed in the newspaper. Ali Bulaç, Şahin Alpay, and Ahmet Turan Alkan were sentenced to 8 years and 9 months in prison; Mümtaz’er Türköne and Mustafa Ünal were sentenced to 10 years and 6 months in prison and İbrahim Karayeğen was sentenced to 9 years in prison.