Socialist Solidarity magazine’s editor Kartal sent behind bars in Turkey

Journalist Sezgin Kartal.

Socialist Solidarity magazine’s managing editor and a former member of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party’s (HDP) party council Sezgin Kartal was arrested on Thursday due to an article he wrote for the magazine’s April 2016 issue.

Kartal was detained at the İstanbul Courthouse in Çağlayan where he went to testify as part of another investigation into him. He was subsequently arrested because it emerged that an İstanbul court had handed down an 18-month prison sentence in January on charges of disseminating the propaganda of a terrorist organization, which was later upheld by the Supreme Court of Appeals.

The article that led to Kartal’s arrest was titled “Victory will belong to people who resist.” Kartal was sent to Metris Prison in İstanbul where he will serve his sentence.

Turkey is the leading jailer of journalists in the world. The Stockholm Center for Freedom (SCF) has documented that 260 journalists are now in jails as of May 24, most in pre-trial detention languishing in notorious Turkish prisons without even a conviction. Of those in Turkish prisons, 238 are arrested pending trial, only 22 journalists remain convicted and serving time in Turkish prisons. An outstanding detention warrants remain for 105 journalists who live in exile or remain at large in Turkey.

Detaining tens of thousands of people over alleged links to the movement, the government also closed down more than 180 media outlets after the coup attempt. (SCF with May 25, 2017

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