Lawyers to appeal arrest of journalist Ahmet Şık
AP photoThe lawyer of arrested Turkish journalist Ahmet Şık said on Dec. 31 that his team will appeal against a court decision to arrest him.
“If there is no big problem, we will object to Ahmet Şık’s arrest on Monday [Jan. 2]. Today we went to the jail to see Ahmet,” said lawyer Can Atalay, adding that they were unable to see the suspect because prison authorities said the facility did not have the required recording setting to monitor the meeting.
Şık was arrested on Dec. 30 on charges of making propaganda on behalf of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ), which was blamed for the July 15 failed coup attempt.
Atalay said, before his arrest, Şık rejected to give testimony as he said “you cannot interrogate journalism in this way. The same thing is happening as it was happening five years ago,” referring to previous bogus investigations led by prosecutors allied to U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, widely believed to have been masterminded the failed coup attempt in Turkey in Jul 15, 2016.
Meanwhile, a day before his arrest, Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Istanbul deputy Garo Paylan brought the issue of Şık’s detention to the agenda of parliament’s constitution commission, where ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Group Deputy Chair Naci Bostancı denied accusations that Şık was detained in a “political operation.” Bostancı said he was hoping for the speedy release of Şık and acknowledged that he had written a book in 2011 warning about Gülenist infiltration into the state.
Şık and journalist Nedim Şener were jailed as part of the controversial Oda TV case in 2011. Both journalists spent more than a year in prison while awaiting trial before the publication of Şık’s book, titled “The Imam’s Army,” which focused on the Gülen movement’s followers within the police and the judiciary during the time when the Gülenists and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) were close allies. The duo were eventually freed on March 12, 2012.