Spiegel magazine reports Turkey’s ‘absurd trial of journalist Ahmet Sik’

Ahmet Şık

German magazine Der Spiegel has reported journalist Ahmet Sik’s imprisonment with the headline “The Absurd Trial of Journalist Ahmet Sik’.

Ahmek Sik, the UNESCO Press Freedom Prize winner, has been imprisoned since 30 December 2016 in Silivri Prison, where Welt reporter Deniz Yucel is being kept.

The investigative journalist Sik, whose unpublished book landed him in solitary confinement for a year in 2011 after prosecutors loyal to the Gulenist movement targeted him, is now detained on charges of membership to what Turkish authorities call the ‘Gulenist Terrorist Organisation’ (FETO), Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C).

The journalist wrote in his much-debated book, ‘The Army of the Imam‘, that the Turkish AKP government and the Gulenist movement were collaborating for the destruction of the military-centred Kemalist governmental system and the status quo to replace it with what some call ‘political Islam’. Now, Ahmet Sik, is being accused of being a member of ‘FETO’.

According to Spiegel, Sik imprisonment is ‘absurd’ and ‘full of irony’ because his book, The Army of the Imam, has been used as a reference on trials against the Gulenist Movement.

The journalist was detained for spreading propaganda on behalf of ‘FETO’ even though he was the one who revealed ‘the cooperation between the Gulenist movement and Erdogan’ said Spiegel, adding that the Turkish government was using Ahmet Sik’s case to intimidate other journalist.

The magazine also stressed the “poor conditions in Silivri Prison” and said Sik was allowed to have books outside of the ones in the prison library and could only meet with his lawyer and immediate relatives.