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Defendants: Can Dündar

Media Outlet and Position: Özgür Gündem – “Editors-in-Chief on Watch” campaign

Accusations: Making terrorist propaganda; Publishing materials of a terrorist organization

Possible sentences: –

Court: İstanbul 22. High Criminal Court

Case Background: 

Can Dündar, former editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet newspaper, is being tried for his participation in the solidarity campaign “Editors-in-Chief on Watch”, for the pro-Kurdish newspaper Özgür Gündem.

A number of editors, journalists and columnists for the now-shuttered Özgür Gündem newspaper were brought before the court on accusations of “overtly inciting a crime” and “producing terrorist propaganda” for the daily’s articles and reports.

Dündar presently lives in Germany, having fled the country after a gunman attacked him in front of the Çağlayan Courthouse, in İstanbul. Dündar was not injured in the incident.

During a hearing on September 4, 2018, the court requested the execution of Dündar’s arrest warrant in an interim decision and adjourned the trial until January 31, 2019.

On January 31, 2019, the court ruled to grant additional time for missing documents to be included, as well as for an answer from a rogatory court to arrive. The next hearing is set for July 18, 2019.

Dündar also faces charges of “obtaining secret documents for espionage” and “aiding a terrorist organization whilst not being a member” in separate cases after Cumhuriyet reported that trucks belonging to Turkey’s National Intelligence Service (MİT) allegedly carried weaponry across the border to Syria.

Previously, a court sentenced Dündar to five years and 10 months in prison on the charges of “obtaining and revealing secret documents for espionage”, while ordering sentencing on the charge of “aiding a terrorist organization whilst not being a member” to proceed separately.