DFG Co-chair Altan: We still don't know what we are accused of


NEWS CENTER -  DFG Co-chair Serdar Altan, who is among the 16 journalists arrested in Diyarbakır, stated that Kurdish journalists were targeted and said, "We did not know what we were accused of when we were detained, and unfortunately we still do not know what we are accused of."

While reactions to the arrest of 16 journalists in Diyarbakır continue, speaking to Evrensel Newspaper through his lawyer, Dicle Fırat Journalists Association (DFG) Co-chair Serdar Altan who is held in Diyarbakır Type D Prison spoke about the unlawfulness they were subjected to.
Stating that their houses were raided even though it is well known that they would never have fleed in the face of an investigation, Altan said: "They stormed our houses. Ofcourse they could not find any elements of any crime. They confiscated our cell phones anyway along with some CD's full of photos I long forgot about. In a short time we realised that a lot of our friends were picked up. There was a restriction order on our file so we did not know what we were accused of. We still don't."
Stating that they were not subjected to any serious ill-treatment under custody, Altan said: "The arbitrary practices of the police officers made the detention period unbearable to a point. We frequently recieved news from outside via our lawyers. We were hearing that there was a great solidarity out there. Even though the press professional organisations had a shy attitude, we knew our colleagues were there for us and it was sublime."
Regarding the long hours under custody, Altan said: "The detention period turned into torture and punishment instead of a precaution. We understood that they were trying to deactivate us, prevent us from working when the detention period was extended. They detained us for 8 days unlawfully. The absolute worse was the courthouse. We spent 19 hours in the courthouse. It was hard to see a place which was built to dispence justice was being used as a theater stage."
Stating that the police tried to keep them waiting in police vehicles in front of the courthouse until the peosecutor's interrogation, Altan told that upon the insistance of their lawyers, the journalists were taken to the courthouse jail. 
Stating that they knew the interrogation will take a long time since they used their right to remain silent during the police interrogation, Altan said: "They had cooked up a narrative just to be able to arrest us. But it was falling apart as we spoke. We were journalists and it was not us on trial, it was journalism they wanted to prosecute. And that was what happened. 16 journalists were arrested and sent to jail at that court room."
Underlining that weekly Kurdish newspaper Xwebun was put out of commission after the operation and all their belongings were confiscared, Altan said: "Even though it was an attack on journalism, the journalists targeted with this operation were Kurdish journalists. What was done to Xwebun is a clear proof of this."
Underlining that this injustice will not be able to silence the free press, Altan made the following call: "We will continue to write wherever we are. If we can't there will be generations of journalists to follow our steps as we followed the ones before us. Free press will continue to disturb them. We can make it with solidarity of course. We are calling on to all our colleagues and press organisations to step up the solidarity and be louder in our demands. And we want to thank everyone who supported us. Let's not forget, journalism is not a crime!"

View More Articles

17:01 The incident, in which the prosecutor said 'no evidence' despite pregnancy, turned out to be rape.
16:09 Decision to continue the detention of 16 journalists
15:17 Şenyaşar family: We will not leave courthouse until justice will serve
14:09 Fire in Cudi, where tree chopping was done
13:29 The rangers are asked to be driven into the war tunnels
13:20 Armed conflict continues in the rural area of Anîtos
12:53 The Kurdish politician wanted by MIT to be extradited is in the same ward with ISIS members.
11:23 Turkish state killed two civilians and called them "terrorist"
15:23 Şenyaşar family: We will not leave this courthouse until justice is served
14:57 Drone attack on Amûdê
14:56 Attack on Til Temir: One person died
14:34 Atmaca who allegedly committed suicide lost his life
14:29 Drone attack against Qamishlo
14:20 HDP: We condemn the attacks on Gaza
14:18 308 intellectuals call on opposition to defy Turkish incursion into North-East
14:15 Journalist İbrahim: KDP is an accomplice of the massacre carried out by Turkey
11:33 Constitutional courts decides retrial of police who killed Ali İsmail Korkmaz
19:52 Afrin Canton Council calls for accountability for Turkish occupation state`s crimes
16:45 People of Şırnak says they want public awareness for natural destruction in Şırnak
14:16 'Those who killed Hüseyin are those who arrested the journalists today'
13:27 Governor bans Şenyaşar family from entering the yard of courthouse
12:20 Release of 30-year-old prisoner postponed
10:29 Villages of Dirbesiye shelled by Turkey
13:05 Attorneys of Aysel Tuğluk: She must be released immediately
12:45 Turkish fighter jets shells a village of Amediyê
12:14 Şenyaşar family: Justice is late but it will be done
11:43 Joint statement from HDK and HDP: Stop the torture at the borders
10:50 Footage of surveillence video regarding alleged suicide in prison shelved
09:22 Decision of release for Aysel Tuğluk in Kobané Case
14:58 'Center for Combating Disinformation' established in Turkey!
14:57 New application submitted by Öcalan's family and legal guardian
14:16 Şenyaşar family: Where is justice if this is a state of law?
13:06 Alleged suicide in Batman Prison
12:45 Torture at Iran-Turkey border!
12:30 Prisoner suffering from epilepsy battered by guards
12:29 'Erdoğan will pay a heavy price if he insists on going to war'
11:39 Güngördü: Aysel Tuğluk could not recognise her attorney
15:32 Two children murdered by Iranian forces in Marivan
15:28 DFG: 13 journalists subjected to police attack in July
15:28 1-month balance sheet in Afrin under Turkish control
15:17 Lawyers of Öcalan submits new application for a visit in İmralı
14:54 Imprisoned journalists not allowed to buy refrigerator
14:33 80-year-old prisoner Makbule Özer taken to prison
13:52 The picklock of the government: Anonymous witness
11:18 Journalist Hezil: KDP did not protect Yazidis nor allowed them to defend themselves
16:23 Aysel Tuğluk: I am not in a position to defend myself, I don't remember anything
12:58 HDP members detained before the loan offer: We were taken hostage
12:06 Why Aysel Tuğluk can't be prosecuted, in 10 questions
11:16 Şêxo, who saved hundreds of Yazidis in the ISIS attack: They only believed in the PKK
09:30 Turkish soldiers strapped bomb on a dog to send to war tunnels