Professor, jailed for 6 years, given disciplinary punishment on day of release

Prof. Sedat Laçiner is seen in Çanakkale Prison.

A prominent Turkish professor who has been behind bars for six years on politically motivated charges has been forced to serve four more months in prison after he was given a disciplinary punishment on the day of his release, Turkish Minute reported, citing a journalist.

In an article on his personal website, journalist Fehmi Koru talked about the plight of Professor Sedat Laçiner, an expert on international relations and the former rector of Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University in western Turkey.

Laçiner was detained on July 20, 2016, five days after a failed coup in Turkey, and arrested by a court on July 23, 2016 over alleged ties to the Gülen movement, which the Turkish government and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan declared a terrorist organization following the abortive putsch.

The movement denies all accusations of masterminding the coup attempt.

In September 2018 he was sentenced to nine years, four months and 15 days in prison by a court in Çanakkale after his conviction of membership in the Gülen movement.

According to Koru, Laçiner was given a disciplinary punishment due to an incident he was not involved in on the day he was to be released from jail and ordered to spend four more months in prison.

Koru said he feels very sorry for the professor and his family and thinks it is nonsense to keep Laçiner in prison for four months when the grounds for his imprisonment were already not convincing.

Laçiner studied at Ankara University and the University of Sheffield, where he was awarded an M.A. with distinction in international politics, and King’s College London, where he earned his Ph.D. Since 2001 he had been teaching international relations and international security at Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University and the National Police Academy Security Studies Institute in Ankara. Professor Laçiner was appointed rector of Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University in 2011, becoming the youngest rector in Turkey

Laçiner was also the editor of the Journal of Administrative Studies and Review of International Law and Politics as well as a regular contributor to state-run TRT and other Turkish television and radio broadcasts. He was also chairman of the Journal of Turkish Weekly, a regular columnist for the Star newspaper and general coordinator of Ankara-based think tank the International Strategic Research Organization (ISRO).

Laçiner is the author/co-author or editor of numerous books and articles, including “Iraq Global War and Turkey,” “The Iraq Crisis,” “Turks and Armenians,” “The World and Turkey,” “European Union with Turkey, Turkey’s Membership’s Impact on the EU,” “The Armenian Diaspora” and “Britain from a Different Perspective.”

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