An İstanbul prosecutor has demanded aggravated life sentences for nine journalists affiliated with now-defunct Zaman daily, which was closed by the government after a coup attempt in July 2016.

The nine suspects, according to the prosecutor, have “violated the Turkish constitution.”

The journalists for whom life sentences are being sought as follows: Columnists Mümtaz’er Türköne, Ali Bulaç, Şahin Alpay, Ahmet Turan Alkan, İhsan Duran Dağı, Orhan Kemal Cengiz, and reporters İbrahim Karayeğen, Mehmet Özdemir, Mustafa Ünal.

All nine of them have been held in pre-trial detention for almost 19 months.

Zaman daily was seized by the Turkish government on March 4, 2016 over its affiliation with Turkey’s Gülen group and closed down in the aftermath of a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

 

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