Turkey: life imprisonment sought for nine Zaman newspaper columnists

first_img April 28, 2021 Find out more Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor News Organisation Reporters Without Borders (RSF) regards the long prison sentences sought by the prosecution in the trial of 31 former Zaman newspaper employees – including life imprisonment for nine of its former columnists – as an extremely ruthless act of political revenge.The sentences were requested at the third hearing held on 5 April inside Silivri high security prison, 85 km west of Istanbul, at which the prosecution began to rush the trial. RSF’s Turkey representative attended the hearing as an observer.If the court passes the requested sentences, the nine columnists – Şahin Alpay, Ahmet Turan Alkan, Ali Bulaç, Mümtazer Türköne, İbrahim Karayel, Mehmet Özdemir, Mustafa Ünal, İhsan Duran Dağı and Orhan Kemal Cengiz – will spend the rest of their lives in the strictest isolation, with no possibility of parole, and with minimal family visits. It is the Turkish penal system’s harshest punishment.Their crime was writing columns for Zaman, Turkey’s most widely read newspaper until it was placed under state control and then closed by decree in 2016. The newspaper’s editorial position was favourable to the Gülen movement, a onetime government ally now accused of being behind an abortive coup attempt in July 2016.This nonetheless sufficed for the prosecution to claim that these nine journalists “tried to overthrow constitutional order” and “belonged to a terrorist organization.” No evidence of individual involvement in acts of violence or condoning violence was produced. The prosecution claimed that the sole aim of their editorials critical of the government was to create a public “perception” favourable to a coup.The prosecutor also asked the court to convict 20 Zaman administrators, technical employees and investors of “belonging to a terrorist organization” and two of its journalists, Nuriye Ural and Lalezar Sarı İbrahimoğlu, of “assisting a terrorist organization.” Both charges carry long jail sentences.“The unimaginable is becoming the norm in Turkey,” RSF Turkey representative Erol Önderoğlu said. “Is life imprisonment going to become the standard price for practicing the ‘crime’ of journalism? The sole aim of this flawed and rushed trial is to execute a political reprisal dictated by the government.”Önderoğlu added: “We again demand the immediate release of these journalists and the withdrawal of the proceedings in the absence of any evidence of individual involvement in a crime recognized by international law.”Seventeen of the defendants, including Ahmet Turan Alkan, Ali Bulaç and Mümtazer Türköne, have already spent more than a year and a half in provisional detention. The well-known columnist Şahin Alpay was released from prison and placed under house arrest in March after being held for 18 months. This did not however satisfy either the European Court of Human Rights or Turkey’s constitutional court, both of which have issued rulings calling for all restrictions on his freedom to be lifted.The defence lawyers were unanimous in claiming that the trial is being conducted in a summary fashion. No one had expected that the prosecutor would begin presenting his summing-up at this hearing when the earlier stages of the trial have not yet been completed.At this hearing, the lawyers representing the journalists discovered the existence of prosecution evidence of which they had not previously been notified. The court rejected their request for experts to examine certain prosecution evidence, although the summing-up included arbitrary and one-sided interpretation of many columns.To speed up the proceedings even more, the court agreed to split the trial four ways, with the columnists, administrators, technical employees and investors henceforth being tried separately. The next hearing for the columnists has been scheduled for 10 and 11 May and is supposed to end with a verdict.Representatives of the Swedish consulate, the European Union’s Ankara delegation and the NGOs Article 19 and P24 also observed the 5 April hearing.Turkey is ranked 155th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index. The already worrying media situation has become critical under the state of emergency proclaimed after the July 2016 coup attempt. Around 150 media outlets have been closed, mass trials are being held and the country now holds the world record for the number of professional journalists detained. TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Activities in the fieldCondemning abuses Judicial harassmentImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe RSF_en Receive email alerts News TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Activities in the fieldCondemning abuses Judicial harassmentImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe Newscenter_img April 2, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Turkey Help by sharing this information April 9, 2018 Turkey: life imprisonment sought for nine Zaman newspaper columnists Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law April 2, 2021 Find out more News Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit to go furtherlast_img read more


How to develop your financial institution’s COVID-19 return-to-work policy

first_img continue reading » While many stay-at-home orders have been extended, some states are allowing at least some businesses to reopen. It is important for organizations to realize the need for advanced planning of their return-to-work strategy to ensure a smooth transition.The following best practices will provide guidance to consider while creating your institution’s return-to-work policy. While this guidance is not legal advice, it is a helpful source for getting started and can help you create a measured approach to your policy.Review Federal, State and Local PlansFirst, it is important to review any applicable federal, state and local recovery plans, including each state’s local stay-at-home orders. Some states may even have a posted recovery plan that your institution may leverage. If you are a larger multi-state institution, you may want to include the proposed recovery plan from the CDC and the White House in your decision-making process. Or, if you are a smaller institution located in a single state or in a handful of states, you may want to consider looking at a specific state’s recovery plan, such as the state of Missouri’s plan. Both plans incorporate and rely on guidance from medical professionals, which is important as you may not want to rush employees back too soon. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more


GOtv Boxing Night Mini: Real One vows to disfigure opponent’s face

first_imgRelatedPosts GOtv Boxing Night 20: TClassic to perform with Zlatan, Mayorkun, Malaika, Oritsefemi GOtv Boxing Night 19: Lightweight division Nigeria’s most competitive – Real One GOtv Boxing Night 19: Joe Boy, Baby Face target N1m Cash Prize West African Boxing Union lightweight champion, Rilwan “Real One” Oladosu, has boasted that he will Disfigure the face of Ola Adebakin, his opponent at GOtv Boxing Night Mini on 16 November.Their eight-round lightweight bout is one of the five scheduled to take place at the Rowe Park Sports Complex at Yaba, Lagos.Speaking in an interview yesterday, the WABU champion, renowned for his flamboyance, said Adebakin will become unrecognisable to his family and friends after the fight, as he would messed up his face for good.He expressed confidence that his unbeaten record will remain intact.“I heard  Adebakin has been boasting. No problem. By the time I’m through with him, his family and friends won’t recognise him. I will redesign his face,” he said.Oladosu commended the sponsors for the new event, noting that it will help Nigerian boxers get tested and earn more fights in order to enhance their career records and gain the attention of regional and international boxing bodies to compete for regional and international titles.Other bouts for the event include a national welterweight challenge between Rilwan “Baby Face” Babatunde, West African Boxing Union welterweight champion, and Dennis “The Range” Mba; a national cruiserweight challenge between Kabiru “KB Godson” Towolawi and Tunji “Germani” Olajide; and a national light welterweight challenge between Waheed “Showmax” Shogbamu Semiu “Jagaban” Olopade.There is also an all-female clash as Cynthia “Omo Bobby” Ogunsemilore will take on Omowunmi “Mummy’s Pet” Akinsanya in a national super featherweight challenge. Tags: Rilwan Oladosulast_img read more