Erdoğan seeks life sentence for newspaper editor who revealed arms transfers to Syria

Today’s Zaman reports: Cumhuriyet Editor-in-Chief Can Dündar — for whom President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is demanding a life sentence, an aggravated life sentence and an additional 42-year term of imprisonment for publishing video footage of what the daily said were arms being transferred to Syria on trucks operated by the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) — has been receiving more and more support both from Turkey and overseas.

Erdoğan filed a criminal complaint against Dündar on Tuesday after prosecutors launched a probe investigating the newspaper and Dündar for the publication. The footage released by Cumhuriyet on Friday showed gendarmerie officers and police officers opening crates on the back of trucks that contained what the daily said were weapons and ammunition sent to Syria in January 2014. The footage contradicts the government’s earlier claim that the trucks were only carrying humanitarian aid to Turkmens in the war-torn country.

The prosecutor has requested the maximum penalty of an aggravated life sentence, one life sentence and an additional 42 years in jail, Cumhuriyet said.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has harshly criticized Turkey over the criminal investigation started against the Cumhuriyet daily and its editor-in-chief for the daily’s report on Syria-bound trucks carrying arms from Turkey, stating that the probe targeting the daily should be dropped immediately. [Continue reading…]

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