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Turkey: At least 23 Staff Members of Azadiya Welat Newspaper Detained in Police Raid

30 August 2016

According to media reports, police raided the main office of the Kurdish-language daily newspaper Azadiya Welat based in Diyarbakir on 28 August and arrested at least 23 staff members who are currently detained at Diyarbakir Police headquarters. They are : Yasemin Sayın, Hayat Yılmaz, Ahmet Kızılay, Arap Turan, Berxwedan Tulpar, Sürreya Dal, Zeynep İzgi, İbrahim Bayram, Engin Özelçi, Ahmet Boltan, Ceylan İpek, Mehmet Emin Kaya, Ziyan Karahan, Veysi Altın, Ercan Yeltaş, Azime Tarhan, Serdal Polat, Cengiz Aslan, Ferit Toprak, Mehmet Hüseyin Şahin, Mehmet Aydın, Pusat Bulut and Mehmet Emin Akgün.

Dicle News Agency (DİHA) reported that the police justified the operation by the notice they had received of “[illegal] organizational meetings held”. Phones and IDs of the staff members have been seized.