07:16 GMT04 July 2020
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    The trial of two Turkish journalists in Istanbul illustrates Ankara's determination to suppress all critical reporting and the pair’s prosecution should be stopped, a US watchdog group said in a statement on Friday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Can Dundar, the editor of Turkey’s Cumhuriyet and Erdem Gül, the newspaper’s bureau chief in Ankara, are currently on trial for allegedly obtaining and revealing state secrets in an attempt to overthrow the government and knowingly helping a terrorist organization, Human Rights Watch explained.

    Dundar and Gul were arrested and placed in pre-trial detention in November 2015 for publishing an article in the Cumhuriyet daily, reporting that Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MIT) trucks had carried containers with artillery shells, machine gun rounds and mortar shells to Syrian rebels.

    “The trial of Can Dündar and Erdem Gül is about putting journalism itself on trial and is one of the most flawed prosecutions in Turkey in recent times,” senior Turkey researcher at Human Rights Watch Emma Sinclair-Webb said. “Reporting on arms shipments is a matter of public interest in any country whether the government likes it or not.”

    Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag revealed earlier this month that the country has opened some 2,000 legal cases for insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in his nearly two-year term.


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    journalists, Human Rights Watch, Turkey
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