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Turkish newspaper staff remanded in custody over coup attempt links: CNN Turk
September 19, 2017 / 8:07 PM / a month ago

Turkish newspaper staff remanded in custody over coup attempt links: CNN Turk

ANKARA (Reuters) - A Turkish court has remanded in custody for another two months 21 of the 30 journalists and newspaper executives from Turkish newspaper Zaman which was shut down after last year’s failed coup, broadcaster CNN Turk said on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: Police officers carry security barriers in front of the Zaman newspaper headquarters in Istanbul, Turkey March 6, 2016. REUTERS/ Osman Orsal

The former employees of the Zaman newspaper are charged with “membership of an armed terror organization” and “attempting to overthrow” the government, parliament and the constitutional order through their links to cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Zaman was affiliated with Gulen, the U.S.-based cleric and former ally of President Tayyip Erdogan. Gulen is blamed by Ankara for instigating the failed July 2016 coup, but denies any involvement.

Zaman was first seized by the Turkish government in March 2016 before the coup attempt, and then closed down by a government decree.

The indictment calls for three consecutive life sentences for the Zaman staff on charges of attempting to overthrow the constitutional order, the Turkish parliament and the Turkish government, and says the newspaper exceeded the limits of press freedom and freedom of expression.

The 21 people remanded in custody had already been jailed for over a year pending trial. CNN Turk said the trial was postponed to Nov. 13.

Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Editing by Ece Toksabay and Ken Ferris

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