Turkey acquits 3 rights activists of terror-related charges

July 17, 2019 - 6:45 am

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A court in Istanbul has acquitted the Turkey representative for Reporters Without Borders and two other human rights activists of charges of engaging in terrorist propaganda.

The media advocacy group said Erol Onderoglu of Reporters Without Borders; Sebnem Korur Fincanci, head of the Human Rights Foundation; and writer Ahmet Nesin were acquitted Wednesday. They were charged three years ago for taking part in a campaign to show solidarity with a pro-Kurdish newspaper, Ozgur Gundem, which was later closed down by Turkish authorities. The paper was accused of being a mouthpiece for the banned Kurdish Workers' Party, or PKK.

Reporters Without Borders welcomed their acquittal on Twitter. It said however, that "three years of absurd proceedings was already a form of unjust punishment."

They had faced 7½ years in prison if convicted.