A high criminal court in İstanbul on Tuesday decided for the continuation of the imprisonment of German-Turkish dual citizen and journalist Adil Demirci, in a terrorism trial, Deutsche Welle reported.
Seven months ago Demirci, who lives in the German city of Cologne, went on vacation to Turkey. Before he could return he was arrested on terrorism charges. His trial subsequently started at the İstanbul 25th High Criminal Court.
The 33-year-old is accused of membership in the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party (MLCP) and of spreading terrorist propaganda.
“The last seven months have been very difficult for us as a family. We can hardly wait for my brother to finally be heard by the judge,” Adil’s brother, Tamer Demirci, said.
Demirci was employed in Cologne as a social worker and as a reporter for the Etkin Haber Ajansi (ETHA) news agency.
Demirci’s lawyer, Keleş Öztürk, said there is insufficient evidence to support the prosecution’s allegation that Demirci is a member of a terrorist organization.
“The indictment states that Adil Demirci participated in the funerals of alleged members of the MLCP. But there were more than 2,000 people at these funerals. Does that mean that all those present are criminals?
News of Demirci’s arrest was first reported by Meşale Tolu, who also works for ETHA. She, too, faced charges in Turkey.
Demirci’s family and friends set up the “Freedom for Adil Demirci” campaign in Cologne and held vigils and events demanding his release.
“We have succeeded in mobilizing the public, even if it is not as large as Meşale Tolu or [Die Welt journalist] Deniz Yücel. The evidence speaks for itself: Adil is innocent,” said a friend, Said Boluri, who has supported the campaign for Adil’s release.
Yücel was released from jail earlier this year after spending one year in pre-trial detention, facing terror charges.
The next hearing in Demirci’s trial will be held on Feb.14, 2019.
There are four other German citizens being held in Turkey.