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Turkey2 June 2009

Woman journalist held for past five weeks on baseless charge of link to armed group

Reporters Without Borders firmly condemns the detention of journalist Aylin Duruoglu, the editor of the daily Vatan’s website,, for the past five weeks on a charge of collaborating with an outlawed armed organisation. Arrested on 27 April, she is now being held in Istanbul’s Bakirköy prison.

“Duruoglu is the victim of inexplicable judicial persecution,” Reporters Without Borders said. “If the authorities want to try her, they should do so without delay and ensure that the trial is fair. In the meantime, there are no grounds for continuing her arbitrary detention, which has already gone on for too long.”

In the course of major police operation on 27 April, Duruoglu was arrested on a charge of collaborating with the Revolutionary Headquarters, an armed group on the Turkish government’s list of terrorist organisations, because she knew one if its alleged members, writer and former journalist Ohran Yilmazkaya.

They studied together at Istanbul University and, as a journalist, Duruoglu attended the launch of one his books. She denies the charge.

Turkey is ranked 103rd out of 173 countries in the latest Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.

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