Die Welt Newspaper’s Turkey correspondent Deniz Yücel has been sent off to court to be arrested after his interrogation for ‘Propagandizing organizations’ and ‘Provoking the public for grudge and enmity’. A warrant for Yücel’s arrest has been issued by the court he appeared at.
CHP Istanbul Deputies Mahmut Tanal, Barış Yarkadaş and Sezgin Tanrıkulu monitored the lawsuit.
CHP Istanbul Deputy Barış Yarkadaş who has been monitoring the lawsuit had announced Deniz Yücel’s arrest over his Twitter account. Yarkadaş in his Tweet, has said “We are at the courthouse… Journalist Deniz Yücel was asked questions regarding his newspaper articles, a tweet he shared and an anecdote he told. Journalist- Die Welt Columnist Deniz Yücel has been ARRESTED.”
CHP Istanbul Deputy Barış Yarkadaş who made a press conference after the arrest, has said:
‘A tweet he shared…’
The allegations that are directed to Deniz Yücel consist only of his articles, a tweet he shared and an anecdote he told in the newspaper. Unfortunately, an interview Deniz Yücel made with the PKK leader, Cemil Bayık, two years ago has also been included within the allegations. Again, Deniz Yücel’s articles he published at Die Welt Newspaper has been put in front of him by the judge as proof that he propagandized a terror organization.
‘Deniz Yücel practiced journalism’
When you look at the articles, as Deniz Yücel stated himself, there isn’t an intention to promote the terror organization PKK, nor there is any intention to provoke public for grudge and enmity. Deniz Yücel has only practiced journalism. Deniz Yücel interpreted the issues that the public cared about, from a journalist’s perspective. When the leaders of the terrorist organization PKK and the AKP government sat together to negotiate, as the subject matter appeared to be contemporary and interesting, he made an interview with Cemil Bayık and published it in his newspaper in Germany.
‘A strike against the freedom of thought’
Die Welt Newspaper is one of Germany’s respectable, international newspapers. Today, Deniz Yücel’s arrest is a strike against the freedom of thought. Deniz Yücel didn’t flee. He surrendered himself to the police headquarters knowing the police was looking for him. Despite this, it is unacceptable that Deniz Yücel was arrested for both accounts. This has paved the way for another journalists arrest in Turkey. Sadly, with this verdict, the number of arrested journalists has become 152.
As CHP, we support freedom of thought to the fullest extent. We don’t think it’s rightful or legitimate that journalists should be arrested based on the articles they write or comments they make. Turkey must give up these outdated ways that jails journalists as soon as possible and AKP government must stop seeing the practice of journalism as a crime.
A message to the international press
CHP Deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu who has been monitoring the lawsuit, said “This verdict is a message to foreign journalists and journalists who are reporting from Turkey to international media outlets. That is the meaning. If not, why are the journalists in Turkey being arrested. This is a message to the international media. The message indicates that there is no freedom for journalists who are dedicatedly producing news to international agencies.”
The referendum will be held under these circumstances
CHP Deputy Mahmut Tanal, who also has been monitoring the lawsuit, said:
“This verdict has everything to do with the practice of journalism. The decision isn’t jural, it is political. There might also be a different reasoning behind this verdict. Deniz Yücel, as he is a German citizen, might be considered as a matter of negotiation since Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was denied permission for his referendum rally in Germany. These circumstances point out to what kind of an environment this referendum will be held in.”
Also, Deniz Yücel’s aunts, Esma and Saadet Yücel mentioned that they are extremely upset.