Seven journalists and executives for now-shuttered DİHA are being charged with marking a counterterrorism official as a target due to the article they shared entitled, “Kuşatmanın adı ‘Bayrak 12’, başındaki isim Musa Çitil (Derik Gendarmerie Regional Commander Brigadier General)” in February 2016 via social media.
News director of DİHA Ömer Çelik, Çağdaş Kaplan, Hamza Gündüz, Selman Çiçek and journalist A. Vahap Taş and the former managing editor of Özgür Gündem Inan Kızılkaya, the owner of Özgür Gündem, Kemal Sancılı face up to 3 years of imprisonment. Selman Çiçek, one of the defendants, is also facing charges in the same case for “spreading terrorist propaganda” and up to 5 years of imprisonment. The journalists are being tried at the Diyarbakır 9th High Criminal Court.
The 4th hearing of the case was held on October 2. The next hearing will be held on December 18.
At the final hearing of trial held on December 18, 2019, seven journalists have been acquitted of “marking a counterterrorism official as a target” by 9th High Criminal Court of Diyarbakır (18 December).
After the Public Prosecutor appealed against the rulings of acquittal given by the Diyarbakır 9th High Criminal Court in December 2019, the retrial was held by the court of appeals on June 30, 2021. The 2nd Penal Chamber of the Diyarbakır Regional Court of Justice, the court of appeals, upheld the acquittal of the seven journalists who had been charged with “marking Deputy Commander of Gendarmerie Forces Musa Çitil as a target” (June 30).