Emre Soncan, Zaman
Imprisoned:July 24, 2016

On July 24, 2016, Emre Soncan, a former military affairs correspondent for the shuttered daily newspaper Zaman, wrote on Twitter that that he had learned that police were at his house, and that he was going to turn himself in, amid a sweeping purge of journalists and others suspected of following exiled preacher Fethullah Gülen. The government accuses Gülen of maintaining a terrorist organization and "parallel state structure" (or FETÖ/PDY, as the government calls it) within Turkey that it blames for orchestrating a failed military coup on July 15, 2016.

Istanbul's Fifth Court of Penal Peace on June 30, 2016, arraigned Soncan and 16 other journalists, ordering them jailed pending trial on charges of "being members of an armed terrorist organization," according to the media monitoring group P24. The daily newspaper Hürriyet reported that the 17 journalists were questioned by prosecutors on accusations of "being members of an armed terrorist organization," "founding or leading an armed terrorist organization," "knowingly and willingly helping [a terrorist] organization without being involved in the organization's hierarchical structure," and "committing crimes in the name of a [terrorist] organization without being a member."

A court in March 2016 ordered Zaman's parent company, the Feza Media Group, put under trustees selected by the government, saying the company and the newspaper had ties to the Gülenist network.

CPJ research shows that authorities have targeted dozens of former Zaman journalists with arrest and prosecution on terrorism charges since the failed July 2016 coup.

News reports did not specify where the journalists were being held, and CPJ was unable to reach the journalists' lawyers. Dozens of other journalists jailed pending trial on similar accusations are being held in Istanbul's Silivri Prison.

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