Journalists, writers, cartoonists shouldn’t be tried with arrest: Turkish minister
AA photoJournalists, writers and cartoonists should not be tried under arrest, Culture and Tourism Minister Nabi Avcı has said, adding that his ministry has shared this view with the Justice Ministry.
“Trying without arrest fits the main principles of law,” Avcı said on Nov. 17 in a speech during budget talks at parliament.
During talks regarding the Culture Ministry’s budget, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmakers Zeynep Altıok and Utku Çakırözer brought up the issue of currently arrested writers, cartoonists and executives of daily Cumhuriyet, particularly criticizing the fact that they are being tried with arrest.
“Discussion over the arrest of writers and cartoonists creates an impression that murderers and coup plotters, who should be tried with arrest, were arrested for no reason. In order to prevent such abuse, the trial process of writers and cartoonists should be carried out in line with the charges,” Avcı said in response, referring to the failed July 15 coup attempt.
Ten of Cumhuriyet’s staff are currently under arrest, including its editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu, accused of “terrorist” activities in connection with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, who is widely believed to have masterminded the coup attempt.