Hürriyet reporter Arda Akın arrested in failed coup probe
ISTANBULAn Istanbul court ordered the arrest of Hürriyet reporter Arda Akın on Aug. 15 as a part of the nationwide probe into the Fetullahist Terror Organization/Parallel Structure (FETÖ/PYD) following Turkey’s failed military coup attempt of July 15.
He denied the accusations, saying he had no connection to the organization and the posts on his Twitter account were not related to the failed coup attempt.
However, the Istanbul 5th Criminal Court of Peace ruled for the arrest of Akın on charges of “knowingly and willfully helping the Fetullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ),” which is believed to have been behind the failed coup attempt.
The arrest decision noted that Akın was the first person to report on the incident of National Intelligence Organization (MİT) head Hakan Fidan being called to testify as a suspect by FETÖ members at the Istanbul Public Prosecutor’s Office on Feb. 7, 2012.
In his testimony, Akın stated that he saw the report on the “MİT crisis” on a news website and reported it as a claim that could not be confirmed.
Hürriyet editor-in-chief Sedat Ergin has issued a statement following Akın’s arrest.
“Some of the questions addressed to Arda Akın during his interrogation were about his reports published on our daily’s print version or website, while some were about posts he shared on his personal Twitter account. We believe that our friend has no relationship to any terror organization and his works are limited to legal journalism activities. A number of awards that he has received over the years are the most obvious evidence of our friend’s journalism identity and professional success. We trust that justice will reveal this at last and our friend will be acquitted,” Ergin stated.
Akın had been previously detained as part of the investigation into suspected followers of U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen after the coup attempt but he was released on probation on July 29 and was handed a travel ban.
The Istanbul Public Prosecutor’s Office appealed his release and issued a second detention warrant.