Turkish prosecutors are seeking prison sentences of up to seven and a half years for 18 journalists they accuse of “engaging in propaganda of a terror group” for publishing photos showing a gunman pointing a gun at an abducted prosecutor in March.
The state-run Anadolu Agency reported late on Tuesday that an indictment prepared by the Istanbul chief prosecutor’s office is demanding prison terms for editors of nine newspapers, including Can Dundar, editor-in-chief of the opposition Cumhuriyet newspaper.
The indictment has yet to be approved by a court.
Mehmet Selim Kiraz, the abducted prosecutor, was investigating the killing of Berkin Elvan, who died in March last year after spending 269 days in a coma due to injuries inflicted by police in the mass protests of early summer 2013.
The hostage-takers, who belonged to the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP/C), an outlawed leftist group, had announced a list of demands for his release, including that the officer who shot Elvan must appear on TV and confess his guilt.
The prosecutor was killed in a failed hostage rescue operation.
The photos in question showed gunmen pointing a gun at the prosecutor.
At the time, Turkey blocked access to social networking sites Twitter and YouTube for several hours over the photos.