PEN Norway Turkey Indictment Project – new reports

PEN Norway’s Turkey Indictment Project continues with three new indictment reports researched and authored by three leading international human rights lawyers in 2022.

A new analyses of indictments that directly concern freedom of expression in Turkey and particularly target journalists.

The report published today analyses the indictment of June 2020 against journalist Cengiz Çandar.


Read the full report here in English:

PEN Norway_Legal Report on Indictment Cengiz Candar Eng


Çandar is an experienced Middle East expert and columnist who has been a journalist for more than 40 years. The ongoing trial against him is based on a short post he made
on his twitter account on 30 May 2017. The tweet was a message of condolence for the killing of a young woman by ISIS, who was known to the public for the red scarf she wore during the Gezi protests.

As a result of the tweet, Çandar was charged with praising crime and criminals. Çandar is
still being prosecuted.

Lawyer Barbara Spinelli evaluated the indictment against Çandar in the light of Turkey’s domestic law and international law and stated that the indictment does not contain a cause-and-effect relationship and does not relate the evidence to the elements of the offence.

Spinelli underlined that if this practice were to become widespread, it would be impossible to expect individuals in society to speak freely, protected by the law.

Due to the ongoing crisis in the judiciary and deteriorated state of the rule of law in Turkye we will continue to analyse indictments that directly concern freedom of expression in 2023.