Turkey: Update on the case of the imprisoned journalist of Yeni Demokrasi

Featured image: Reporter Ertan Çıta. Source: Yeni Demokrasi

The imprisoned reporter of the newspaper Yeni Demokrasi, Ertan Çıta, has been released to await trial. Çıta was arrested on the 3rd of October 2023 for his work in informing the public about the reality the ruling classes want to keep them ignorant about. He was arrested for ”membership in a terrorist organization” and “providing services and finance to the organization”, but released to await trial for both charges after having been in prison for nearly three months.

Çıta had faced threats and harassment ever since he started working as a journalist in Dersim. On the 3rd of October he was detained alongside Partizan readers in a wave of raids carried out by the police. When in prison, he wrote a letter in which he defended the work of progressive journalists and the right of the people to know the truth:

”Is it possible to talk about impartial journalism in an environment where the public’s right to receive information is curtailed day by day, censorship has reached its extreme, and manipulation and disinformation have become state policy?

We are journalists. We are the most active subjects of the public’s action to learn the facts and see the truth. We are the subjects in the field, we see the facts in all their nakedness, most closely. That’s why there is no trouble for those who choose to be ‘neutral’ and those who adopt the unprincipled attitude of ‘may the snake that does not touch me live a thousand years’. Those like us who reject impartial journalism and stand by workers, students and the oppressed are the targets of attacks. (…)

Now, if every event or action has a side or ideology, it is not possible for us journalists to be impartial. Our side is the struggle for freedom of the working people of the world. Just as the poet said, ‘You are either inside the circle or outside it’, there is no other option. We, free press workers, are right in the middle of the circle and we will continue our struggle until this circle is broken.”

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