Nokta editors arrested by Istanbul court over post-election cover

Nokta magazine Editor-in-Chief Cevheri Ganduven and Managing Editor Murat andcapan, who were detained at the Istanbul Police Department after the latest issue of the publication was pulled from the shelves on Monday, were arrested by the Istanbul 8th Penal Court of Peace on Tuesday under Article 313 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) for inciting the public to armed conflict.
After Istanbul public prosecutor Umut Tepe referred andcapan and Ganduven to the Istanbul 8th Penal Court of Peace on Tuesday on charges of violating Article 214, which deals with the crimes of disrupting society and inciting one group of people to commit violence against another, demanding their arrest, Judge Atilla andOztandurk ruled for the arrest of the Nokta editors while awaiting trial.

Tepe has in the past initiated several investigations into journalists over their tweets. He was also responsible for the detention of Todayand’s Zaman Editor-in-Chief Bandulent Kenei on Oct. 10 by referring him to court for arrest over tweets which the prosecutor alleged insulted President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Kenei was released on Oct. 14 pending trial.
A day after the parliamentary election on Sunday that gave the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) enough votes to once again form a single-party government, police notified the magazine of a decision by Istanbul 5th Penal Court of Peace judge Cevdet andOzcan to pull the publication from the shelves. andOzcan also ordered the detention of the two Nokta editors and banned access to the Nokta website. Nokta, which is known for its critical stance toward the government, announced the decision on its website, saying the police had confiscated all the magazines at its headquarters and started collecting issues at distribution centers. Noktaand’s cover features a picture of President Erdogan and says Nov. 2 is the and”start of Turkeyand’s civil war.and” After their detention at their offices on Monday, andcapan and Ganduven were taken to a hospital for a medical check-up and were later brought to the Istanbul Police Department where they were kept in a detention cell.
h2andlsquoDetention of Nokta editors aims to intimidate critical mediaand’h2
Speaking to Todayand’s Zaman on Tuesday, lawyer Kadir KandOkten said his clients andcapan and Ganduven are being detained on baseless charges. According to KandOkten, the detention of his clients by way of a government-backed investigation aims to intimidate dissident voices in the critical media.
Reacting against the charges brought by prosecutor Tepe that his clients had violated Article 214, KandOkten said: and”Accusing someone of violating Article 214 of the TCK means they are arming people. Did Nokta distribute hand grenades as a promotion?and”
Underlining that the magazine was prepared and sent to print on Friday, KandOkten claimed the prosecutorand’s interpretation that Nokta was provoking the public after the election results were announced indicated a single-party rule by the AK Party is wrong.
Nokta news coordinator Ertuirul Erbai told the andOzgandur Bugandun daily on Tuesday they had prepared the magazine prior to the announcement of the results of Sundayand’s general election. Denying claims on social media that Nokta had prepared the latest issue after the election results were released on Sunday evening, Erbai said they complete every issue and send it to print on Fridays.
and”We emphasized in our reports that difficult times await Turkey after the Nov. 1 election under the shadow of the terrorist attacks in Suruandc in July and Ankara in October, and the alleged government takeover of the SandOzcandu, Cumhuriyet and Zaman dailies and the Dogan Media Group in an ironic tone,and” Erbai explained.
After a police raid on Nokta on Sept. 14, its distribution was halted and Managing Editor andcapan was detained because the magazine featured a cover showing a selfie taken by smiling Erdogan with the flag-draped coffin of a soldier in the background. The cover was a reaction to Erdoganand’s remarks during a soldierand’s funeral: and”We bid a farewell to our martyr who we believe he has reached martyrdom. How happy is his family, how happy are his nearest and dearest!and”
However, the raids seem to have backfired as many Twitter users shared the cover in question, and it circulated exponentially on social media. A large number of Twitter users have condemned the crackdown on Nokta and consider it an attempt by the government to muzzle media outlets that are critical of it.
h2Press Council condemns arrest of Nokta editors h2 The Press Council, in a statement on Tuesday, condemned the arrest of Ganduven and andcapan, saying the AK Party which is now able to form a single-party government after Sundayand’s election has started to target journalists again.
Main opposition Republican Peopleand’s Party (CHP) Deputy Chairman Gandursel Tekin also condemned the arrest of the editors, saying there is no democracy in a country whose press is not free.
and”The arrest of journalists demonstrates how AK Party government is going to act in its new rule as a single party,and” he added.

SOURCE: TODAY”S ZAMAN

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