Journalist Nurcan Yalçın sentenced to prison for “supporting the PKK”

Kurdish journalist Nurcan Yalçın has been sentenced to two and a half years in prison in Amed for “supporting the PKK”. The background to the trial was a report on the siege of the old city district of Sur.

Journalist Nurcan Yalçın was sentenced to two and a half years imprisonment for “supporting the PKK” at the sixth chamber of the Diyarbakir (ku. Amed) criminal court. The background to the proceedings were video reports that Yalçın made in 2015/2016 at the barricades of the sealed-off old city district of Sur. The court considered it proven that the journalist had "knowingly and intentionally" supported a terrorist organisation. The defence had demanded acquittal, claiming that the court was aware of her client's journalistic activities.

Until a few years ago, Sur was still a historical centre of different cultures. After its destruction by Turkish security forces in the course of the military siege in the winter of 2015/2016, residential areas were expropriated and the population was displaced.

Targeted by the authorities for years

This is not the first time Nurcan Yalçın has been targeted by the repressive Turkish authorities. In November 2021, she was sentenced to almost four years in prison on terror charges in a trial that was sharply criticised internationally. The background was a case against the Amed-based Rosa Women's Association, an aid organisation for women affected by violence. Yalçın was convicted of "knowingly and willingly supporting a terrorist organisation" and "spreading terrorist propaganda".

Another case against Yalçın is still pending in connection with the protests against the removal of mayors in Kurdish municipalities in 2019. In this case, she is accused of participating in "banned assemblies" and disobeying police dispersal orders. Her two colleagues, Rojda Aydın and Halime Parlak, who, like Yalçın, accompanied the protests as journalists, are also charged.