Travel ban not lifted for journalists İsminaz Temel and Havva Cuştan

24 April 2019
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In the trial where ETHA editor İsminaz Temel and reporter Havva Cuştan are among the 23 defendants, the court ordered the release of 2 detained defendants and ruled for the continuation of the travel ban for all

İstanbul - Fifth hearing of the trial where 23 defendants including Etkin News Agency (ETHA) editor İsminaz Temel and reporter Havva Cuştan face “membership in a terrorist organization” and “terrorist propaganda” charges resumed at the İstanbul 27th High Criminal Court today.

Journalists İsminaz Temel and Havva Cuştan were present in the courtroom with their lawyers as well as detained defendants Coşkun Yiğit and Erkan Kakça. Defendants Gülhan Kaya, Sezin Uçar and Özlem Gümüştaş who are lawyers from the People’s Law Bureau (HBB) attended the hearing as well.

Since there were changes made to the panel of judges, record of proceedings from previous hearings were read out loud during this hearing. The detained defendants requested their release.

Journalist İsminaz Temel’s lawyer said, “My client is a journalist. She has to attend certain conferences and conventions abroad. We demand the court to lift her international travel ban.” Lawyer Özlem Gümüştaş’s defense lawyer added, “My client is a lawyer. She was tried for similar charges but was acquitted in the past. She has attended many conferences abroad and always returned. It is evident that she would not flee the country. We demand her international travel ban to be lifted.” All defense lawyers took the floor in turn and demanded their clients’ travel ban to be lifted. Following these statements, the court gave a short break for deliberation.

Following the break, the court ordered the release of detained defendants Coşkun Yiğit and Erkan Kakça. However, the court rejected defendants’ requests for the travel ban to be lifted. The travel ban is still in effect for journalists İsminaz Temel and Havva Cuştan.

ETHA editor İsminaz Temel was released from prison in the previous hearing after 16 months. Following today’s releases, no detained defendants remain in this trial.

The trial is adjourned until 3 September.