Turkish jailed journalists: Penal court vs Constitutional Court

Turkish jailed journalists: Penal court vs Constitutional Court

In the post- (attempted and failed) coup era, Ankara has been relentless against all those that the government sees as possible coup plotters or people engaged in overthrowing it.

Nearly 160 journalists have been imprisoned, as the Turkish Journalists’ Association, and rights groups tell the international public, noting that Turkey at the moment is the largest global journalists’ prison.

Anadolu, the country’s state-run news agency, on Thursday said that Turkish penal courts decided to keep two jailed journalists in detention, shortly (only hours) after a top court had requested they be released because their rights had been violated while in custody.

The two journalists are Mehmet Altan and Sahin Alpay. They have been imprisoned for more than a year and due to claims that they are linked with terrorist groups and of attempting to overthrow the government, but they themselves are denying any such connections.

Photo: Journalists Mehmet Altan and Sahin Alpay

Separate penal courts decided to reject the Constitutional Court ruling that they should be freed, reported Anadolu. Earlier on, the Constitutional Court had earlier said: “It was decided… by a majority of votes that their freedom of expression and (the freedom of) press, protected under… the constitution, were violated”.


“Altan is a professor of economics and frequent commentator in liberal Turkish media. Alpay is a columnist.”

In total, almost 130 media outlets have been shut down during the coup crackdown…/IBNA