Ekmek ve Adalet | Imprisoned in Turkey | February 19, 2004

Job:Print reporter
Medium:Print
Beats Covered:Politics
Gender:Male
Local or Foreign:Local
Freelance:No
Charge:Anti-state, Retaliatory
Length of Sentence:Life
Reported Health Problems:Yes

A local court sentenced Gök, Ankara correspondent for the leftist magazine Ekmek ve Adalet (Bread and Justice), to six years and three months in prison on charges of being a member of the outlawed Revolutionary People's Salvation Party/Front (DHKP/C), according to his defense lawyer, Evrim Deniz Karatana. Gök's lawyers appealed the sentence.

Karatana told CPJ that the evidence against the journalist consisted of his news coverage and attendance at political demonstrations. She said that Gök had been targeted for his reporting on politics and human rights, along with his beliefs as a socialist. Karatana said her client suffers from Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, a brain disorder, which has led to a loss of sight and balance. She said he was jailed despite having a medical document that says he has a severe disability and should not be incarcerated.

Gök was also serving a life term on charges of membership in a terrorist organization, forgery, bombing, and murder, all dating to the early 1990s, according to an updated list of charges provided by the Justice Ministry. The life sentence was withdrawn in 2002 when Gök was released on parole for health reasons, Karatana told CPJ. When Gök was rearrested in 2004 on the DHKP/C membership charges, the life term was reinstated, she said. She said their appeal against the reinstated life term was rejected.

The People's Law Office, a free law clinic in Istanbul that was representing Gök in late 2017, told CPJ that the journalist was being held in Tekirdağ Prison, in the northwestern province of the same name. Authorities have ignored his medical needs, a lawyer assigned to his case told CPJ.

This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.