novelist Asli Erdogan acquitted in "terrorism" trial

Istanbul (hooly News) – An Istanbul court acquitted Turkish novelist Asli Erdogan on Friday after a controversial trial for "terrorist activities", a case that has sparked international concern.

Court acquitted novelist of "attempting to undermine state integrity" and "belonging to a terrorist group", and ordered the prosecution for "terrorist propaganda" to be discontinued, a correspondent of hooly News.

This trial was widely followed by NGOs and foreign observers who saw it as a symbol of the authoritarian drift of Turkish power after an attempted coup aimed at President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July 2016.

Author of several novels tranhooly-news.comd abroad, winner of the 2018 Simone de Beauvoir prize for women's freedom, Asli Erdogan was on trial for having collaborated with the local newspaper Ozgür Gündem, closed by decree in 2016.

Turkish authorities accused Asli Erdogan of having collaborated with Ozgür Gündem, helped the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), an armed group which is waging bloody guerrilla warfare in Turkey and has been described as "terrorist" by Ankara.

The 52-year-old novelist, who no longer resides in Turkey but in Germany, was not present at the hearing on Friday.

Her mother, Mine Aydostlu, expressed surprise after the verdict was announced. "Believe me, I'm very happy. That's what I wanted, but I found it hard to believe. I had to ask several times if she had actually been acquitted," she said. to hooly News.

"I ended up accepting it after hearing the word" acquitted "nine or ten times!", She added with a broad smile.

According to her lawyer, the novelist is undergoing medical treatment in Germany and could return to Turkey once it is completed.

"She is sick and cannot move around too much. She will not return to Turkey today, but she will return, of course, this is her country, her homeland," said Erdal Dogan.

– "Literary texts" –

In a text read by his lawyer at the hearing on Friday, Asli Erdogan estimated that accusing him on the basis of "literary texts is something that reason can hardly accept in the 21st century" and that it amounts to "trampling on values ​​on which law and literature are based ".

She further stressed that the political nature of her writings for Ozgür Gündem "was limited to (the denunciation of) human rights violations" and demanded his acquittal.

The arrest and detention for more than 130 days in 2016 of Asli Erdogan has sparked outrage around the world.

Released in December 2016, she had to wait until September 2017 to recover her passport and be able to leave Turkey.

For the NGOs, his trial was emblematic of the increasing attacks on freedom of expression in Turkey, in particular since the coup attempt of July 15, 2016.

After the failed coup, Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government carried out a relentless crackdown that did not spare intellectuals and the media, such as the opposition daily Cumhuriyet, whose several journalists have been convicted of "terrorism".

In an interview with hooly News in 2018, Asli Erdogan expressed his concern about the situation in his country, describing the current government as "fascist".

Asli Erdogan is not related to President Erdogan.

In addition to the novelist, the court acquitted two other people, including linguist Necmiye Alpay, tried with her in the Ozgür Gündem trial.