Français | English

Zehra Doğan, who had been placed in cus­tody in Turkey on July 21, has just been thrown in jail fol­low­ing a par­o­dy of a hear­ing before a judge.

Stretch­able accu­sa­tions of “ter­ror­ist links”  allowed both by the new law and the sit­u­a­tion fol­low­ing the coup, are seri­ous. The fact a jour­nal­ist can be accused for prac­tic­ing her pro­fes­sion­al activ­i­ty,  and using the means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion required to do so, shows where this regime is head­ed after con­fis­cat­ing jus­tice and, in the last few days, dis­miss­ing every judge who was not yet under the Sul­tan’s boot. In Turkey, jour­nal­ism leads to prison, and dou­bly so if you are Kurdish.

We share below a sum­ma­ry of the arti­cle pub­lished on the web by her news agency JINHA.

Zehra Doğan, a jour­nal­ist from the fem­i­nist agency JINHA was   tak­en into cus­tody on July 21 in Mardin, at the same time as Mazlum Kavak, coun­cil­lor to HDP deputy Ali Ata­lan. Mazlum Kava was freed under judi­cia­ry con­trol but Zehra was sent to jail.

Zehra was one of the rare jour­nal­ists to work in Nusay­bin, even dur­ing the long cur­few peri­od. She was arrest­ed on the ter­race of a cof­fee­house in the com­mune of Yenise­hir while in Mazlum Kavak’s company.

Fol­low­ing her cus­tody, she was pre­sent­ed today to the tri­bunal in Mardin. Pseu­do wit­ness­es were pre­sent­ed against her, although they said they did not know Zehra per­son­al­ly and had only just then learned her name at the hear­ing, but they had seen her work­ing with Bilal Gün­dem ‚one of her jour­nal­ist col­leagues, also recent­ly arrest­ed. This was enough for the court to decide that Zehra was to be put behind bars, on “sus­pi­cion of pos­si­ble escape” and in order to be judged lat­er as ” mem­ber of an ille­gal organization”.

For her defence, Zehra spec­i­fied she was a jour­nal­ist, mem­ber of TGS the jour­nal­ists’ union and reg­is­tered at the social secu­ri­ty admin­is­tra­tion as a jour­nal­ist. She added that all the accu­sa­tions against her con­cerned her pro­fes­sion­al activ­i­ty and that the tes­ti­monies only expressed the fact that she was work­ing. These can­not be con­sid­ered as evi­dence of wrong­do­ing. Indeed, Bilal Gün­dem, Zehra’s col­league, had also been placed under cus­tody recent­ly, on the basis of sim­i­lar tes­ti­monies. He has since been liberated.

Zehra’s lawyers insist­ed on the same facts. They added that her shar­ing on social media and her draw­ings could not be con­sid­ered as sup­port for an ille­gal orga­ni­za­tion. Zehra was sent to the prison in Mardin.

We call on all jour­nal­ists, self-respect­ing Euro­pean media per­son­al­i­ties and intel­lec­tu­als to mobi­lize as much as they did for Can Dün­dar, Cumhuriyet jour­nal­ist, and even more so, know­ing what fate awaits women in Turk­ish pris­ons, espe­cial­ly in the East.

Let us make of Zehra Doğan’s case a sym­bol of the death of all true free­dom of expres­sion in Turkey, of the gag order imposed on the press and the media, of the hence­forth total­i­tar­i­an face of the Turk­ish regime. She is not the only one, and even if we can­not make her car­ry this strug­gle alone, her sit­u­a­tion is emblematic.

For inter­nauts, to your key­boards, to your pens… All media address­es are avail­abe on the web for you to send your reactions.

You are a jour­nal­ist or you know a jour­nal­ist. Send them this arti­cle via email, or write a per­son­al mes­sage. Ask them to inform, to react… That is their job.

The emo­tion caused by her being tak­en into cus­tody had spread on social media. You had been thou­sands in shar­ing and react­ing. We must now go even fur­ther and denounce this impris­on­ment, demand the lift­ing of the false accu­sa­tions and allow for her speedy liberation.

We will share on the Kedis­tan page any peti­tion even­tu­al­ly, as well as note­wor­thy press reactions.

Kedis­tan is not in odor of sanc­ti­ty in Turkey. If main­stream media, and jour­nal­ist sim­ply mas­sive­ly relay the infor­ma­tion in a “cor­po­ratist” man­ner, per­haps Zehra will recov­er her freedom.

Added in October 2016:

Since things are nev­er done bet­ter than by one’s self, we have launched an active sup­port cam­paign HERE.


You may use and share Kedistan’s articles and translations, specifying the source and adding a link in order to respect the writer(s) and translator(s) work. Thank you.
KEDISTAN on EmailKEDISTAN on FacebookKEDISTAN on TwitterKEDISTAN on Youtube
Le petit mag­a­zine qui ne se laisse pas caress­er dans le sens du poil.