We are happy to inform you that 13th High Criminal Court has just issued interlocutory decision of release for Şebnem Korur Fincancı (President of Human Rights Foundation of Turkey, HRFT) and Erol Önderoğlu (Turkey Representative of Reporters without Borders), who were arrested together with Ahmet Nesin (Journalist) on 20 June 2016 on charges of “making terror propaganda” through content and visual of news of Özgür Gündem when they served as the editors-in-chief for one day as a part of the Editor-in-chief on Duty” campaign of Özgür Gündem to provide solidarity and defend press freedom against a number of investigations it has faced. We are expecting that they will be released today. Their first court hearing will be held on 8 November 2016.
While Şebnem Korur Fincancı and Erol Önderoğlu will be released today, there is not any decision about Ahmet Nesin (journalist) yet since his case is followed by a different court. We will of course continue to follow his case closely.
We can say that this decision of release is a hopeful development and somehow reparation for suppression against human rights defenders in Turkey. Yet, we should not forget that this decision cannot eliminate lawlessness and insubstantiality of the case against them, which also means violation of human rights. Thus, we will work on showing the public what this arrest and case against Şebnem Korur Fincancı, who has dedicated her life to preventing human rights violations, mainly torture and ill-treatment supporting life of torture survivors in Turkey and all around the world to rebuild their lives; and pursuing justice for the crime of torture and other gross/serious human rights violations, means for human rights defenders in Turkey.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your valuable efforts and solidarity for their release; it had a great contribution to having this good news.
HUMAN RIGHTS FOUNDATION of TURKEY