Prosecutor from Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, Press Crimes Investigation Bureau drafted an indictment against Osman Akın, managing editor of Yeni Yaşam newspaper.
Istanbul 28. High Criminal Court accepted the indictment and the lawsuit was launched. The first hearing of the case on charges of “spreading continuous propaganda for a terrorist organization“ was scheduled for June 20, 2019.
Akın and his lawyer Özcan Kılıç were in attendance at the first hearing of the trial. Presenting his defense at the hearing, Akın stated the following in summary:
“I am the managing editor of Yeni Yaşam newspaper. I do not accept the charges levelled against me in the indictment. First of all, I would like to emphasize that the stories and articles in question are not discussed in a holistic manner in the indictment; a few words, concepts or phrases are singled out to constitute grounds for the accusations. There is no material and legal evidence or finding to point to propaganda for a terrorist organization in the news and articles in question.”
“These news stories and articles were taken from various web sites and news agencies, and were published for the purposes of informing the general public within the framework of the freedom of the press and expression, since they have journalistic value. These news stories and articles do not encourage acts of violence nor create an atmosphere of terror; nor do they incite the public and individuals to commit crime. I do not accept the charges levelled against me in this indictment.”
Afterwards, prosecutor said that there was no further evidence to be added to the case file and submitted his opinion as to the accusations at the first hearing. He requested that Osman Akın be sentenced since “he spread propaganda to legitmize the violent methods of the armed terror group PKK/KCK, incite recourse to such violence, and drew public attention to the leader of the organization and to protests against his supposed isolation in prison.”.
The court was adjourned until October 22, for the preparation of defense against the opinion as to the accusations.