Turkish gov’t jails 8 more people over their social media posts in Elazığ

Pro-Kurdish media outlets have reported that 8 out of 12 people who were detained by Turkish security forces on August 18, 2017 in Karakoçan and Kovancılar districts of Elazığ province over their social media posts were arrested by a local Turkish court on Wednesday.

After their testimonies at the prosecutor’s office the detainees were referred to the local court with a demand for their arrest. The court has remanded 8 of the detainees over their alleged “propaganda on the behalf of a terrorist organization” on social media while the other 4 detainees were released.

Turkish Interior Ministry announced in early August that investigations were launched into 2,696 social media users and that the identities of 196 were confirmed, leading to the detention of 157 people between July 31 and August 7. The posts allegedly disseminated terrorist propaganda and praised terrorist organizations as well as provoking people to hatred, revenge and enmity and insulting state authorities.

Scores of people in Turkey have also been detained or arrested or are under investigation on allegations of insulting Erdoğan. As of the end of 2016, at least 10,000 people were under investigation on suspicion of terrorist propaganda and insulting senior state officials on social media.

A total of 1,080 people were convicted of insulting Erdoğan in 2016, according to data from Turkey’s Justice Ministry. Data also showed that 4,936 cases were launched against people on charges of insult in 2016.

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