CFWIJ demands immediate release of journalist Beritan Özer
“We urge Turkish authorities to end the attacks against reporters. Journalism is not a crime,” said a statement published by CFWIJ on Monday.
Early this morning, Jin News reporter Beritan Canözer’s house was raided and the journalist was taken into custody. No further information is given about the detention, reportedly.
The Coalition for Women In Journalism (CFWIJ) said they are appalled by this vicious attempt against journalists to intimidate them and called upon the Turkish state to “release our colleague immediately”.
According to Jin News, the reason of Beritan's detention was not specified to her family. The journalist was taken to the Diyarbakır Police Station. Besides Beritan, the police also raided the Rosa Women's Association this morning.
Beritan Canözer, who is consistently targeted by the Turkish state, is a journalist based in south-east Turkey. She was legally persecuted many times nearly over the last decade.
On June 28, 2019, Beritan was detained due to covering a protest in 2015. She was first jailed under the accusation that she was a member of a terror organization and was acting under the instructions of senior executives of the organization on December 19, 2015. The second hearing of the case took place on June 26, 2019, in Diyarbakır. The prosecutor asked that she be sentenced to seven-and-a-half to fifteen years in prison. The decision was postponed to October 2019. However, she was acquitted later by the court.
In 2020, another lawsuit was filed against Beritan about her social media posts. The prosecution requested a prison sentence against Beritan for “spreading propaganda for a terrorist organization” on social media. In the third hearing of the case against her, the court ruled one year, ten months and 15 days in prison.
“The Coalition for Women In Journalism condemns the brutal attack against the journalist. We demand the Turkish state to release Beritan immediately. We find those brutal attempts are aiming to intimidate and silence journalists in Turkey. We urge Turkish authorities to end these attacks against reporters. Journalism is not a crime,” said the statement published by CFWIJ on Monday.