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1ST LEAD German FM calls for quick release of journalist jailed in Turkey By dpa correspondents

Europe
14.02.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Berlin/Istanbul (dpa) - German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Tuesday renewed calls for the release of German journalist Deniz Yucel who has been behind bars for one year without an indictment in Turkey.

Yucel‘s detention "continued to be one of the big hurdles in bilateral relations between Germany and Turkey," Gabriel said.

"Just as before we are directing talks towards a fast and just procedure. In our eyes, the release of Deniz Yucel can be the only goal."

The German government was also continuing to pressure Ankara over other Germans detained for political reasons in Turkey, Gabriel said.

Earlier Tuesday, rights group Amnesty International criticized the Turkish authorities for the continued detention on Yucel.

Yucel was taken into custody on February 14, 2017. He was later accused of terrorism charges and espionage. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan denounced him as an "agent."

The correspondent for Die Welt newspaper, working in Turkey since 2015, has denied all charges against him.

The arrest has strained ties between Berlin and Ankara. German politicians have denounced Turkey, saying the arrest without trial is a violation of basic constitutional and international rights.

Amnesty‘s chief in Germany, Markus Beeko, said the case amounts to "punishment without trial."

Yucel was in solitary confinement for much of the last year, though this treatment ended in December.

According to the P24 platform for independent journalism in Turkey, there are currently more than 150 journalists imprisoned in the country.

 

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