Turkey - Concern over night arrest of journalists

    MONTREAL, March 28 /CNW Telbec/ - Reporters Without Borders today
criticised Turkish police for arresting an ailing 83-year-old journalist at
night for interrogation as a risk to his health.
    Journalist Ilhan Selçuk, owner and columnist of the opposition daily
Cumhuriyet, was seized on 21 March in a crackdown on the illegal organisation
Ergenekon which netted a dozen people, including three journalists whose homes
and offices were searched and computers and documents taken away. He was held
for 10 hours at a police station and told he would be under house arrest until
investigations were complete.
    Selçuk said police asked him about his daily columns in the paper, which
backs the Republican People's Party (RPP) and is very critical of prime
minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The paper's readers, the RPP leader and the
journalists' organisation Platform G9 have expressed support for the paper.
    The two other journalists were imprisoned in Bayrampasa, on the European
side of Istanbul, and charged with "inciting rebellion against the government"
and belonging to an illegal organisation.
    An Istanbul assizes court last June banned "all news about the
investigation of the terrorist organisation Ergenekon."

For further information:

For further information: Katherine Borlongan, secretary general,
Reporters Without Borders, (514) 521-4111, Cell: (514) 258-4208, Fax: (514)
521-7771, rsfcanada@rsf.org

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