Austrian journalist and activist arrested in Turkey, employer says

Austrian journalist and activist arrested in Turkey, employer says

VIENNA - Reuters
Austrian journalist and activist arrested in Turkey, employer says

Turkish authorities have arrested an Austrian journalist and activist on suspicion of a terrorism-related offence, the leftwing website where he works said on Sept. 11.

Re:volt, which describes itself as a "radical left-wing" online magazine, said Max Zirngast had been arrested at his apartment in the Turkish capital Ankara on Sept. 11 morning.

"We condemn this arrest in the strongest terms of course and call for his immediate release," Re:volt said by email, confirming a statement on the arrest from rights group Reporters Without Borders.

"Our writer, who has lived in Turkey for many years, is a passionate leftist activist and author who campaigns for freedom and democracy," the German-language publication added.

Zirngast is also a student of political science in his late 20s, Re:volt said. It added that it believed the allegation against him was membership of a terrorist organisation.

"We expect Turkey to immediately explain what the journalist is accused of, and if that is not possible then to immediately release him," Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz told reporters before a weekly cabinet meeting.

Kurz's government, a coalition of his conservatives and the anti-immigration Freedom Party, is opposed to Turkey joining the European Union and has called for accession talks to be broken off. However, both countries have recently tried to improve their relations.

Turkish officials were not immediately available for comment on the arrest.

Max Zirngast, judicial, arrest