The 9th session of the trial of the paper commenced yesterday since the closure order when the editors and the owners were charged with “chain of terror propaganda.” Neither the editor nor the owner attended the session. However, their attorney was present
This is not the first time the Kurdish daily newspaper was attacked by the Turkish government. Yet, the ultra-right and nationalist AKP government of Turkey is hell-bent on trying to depict Özgür Gündem daily as a propaganda tool of the Workers’ Party of Kurdistan that it considers as a terrorist organisation.
The paper has been the flagship of the Kurdish people in Turkey, often documenting the attacks and the devastation of the Turkish government inflicts on the Kurdish population or towns. This news never gets covered by the Turkish main stream news, except by some left wing and independent press which have been marginalised by the constant government attacks similar to what Özgür Gündem is experiencing.
The paper was banned with the presidential edict right after the July 15 2016 coup attempt that gave the president the excuse to use his executive power to shut down any/all dissenting voice in the country.
Many within the country consider the July 15 coup as only an attempt, a staged theatrics of the government, an excuse to clamp down on opposition at a time when it was no longer able to cover its own failures.
The 9th session of the trial of the paper commenced yesterday since the closure order when the editors and the owners were charged with “chain of terror propaganda.” Neither the editor nor the owner attended the session. However, their attorney was present.
Another case against the paper
This is not the only case against the Özgür Gündem paper. In another, more comprehensive “Main Case” where similar charges were levelled against the paper, another court heard arguments against many other writers and reporters by the prosecutor. In this session those charged from the daily were present.
In the “Main Case” against Özgür Gündem, the prosecutor asked an extension to prepare for the case against the paper.
By closing down and prosecuting the editors, writers and reporters, the government is preventing any news from Kurdistan to be published. Most people in Turkey are unaware of the destruction the Turkish army, the police, and the ISIS militants working in cahoots with the Turkish government have wreaked in Kurdish towns and people.