According to the indictment, opinion pieces and news reports do not essentially serve to divulge news. They are indicators of ‘An endeavour to denigrate the president and the country.’ Forming the main thrust of the indictment are articles that have previously never come to the attention of the judiciary or the reports about the intelligence service lorries over which prosecution continues. Another allegation revolves around the foundation management board election lawsuit that is pending before Istanbul Civil Court of First Instance No 1. Reports in the foundation case have also been submitted as part of the evidence in the indictment.
You changed your editorial policy
It is asserted in the indictment that there are records of communications between our foundation chair Orhan Erinç and Fethullah Gülen Terrorist Organisation (FETO) Consultation Board Member Halit Esendi, three ByLock-user suspects and eight people involved in the FETO investigation. It is claimed that Erinç saw to it that the foundation of which he was chair was purged of Republican writers and the paper deviated in a direction that was incompatible with the paper’s traditional editorial policy and world view, or, indeed, ran counter to it. With it stated that he saw to it that Önder Çelik was elected in the election held on 2 April 2013, attention is drawn to İnan Kıraç’s statement. It is stated that Kıraç said his vote that was sent in an envelope was not held to be valid at the meeting held on 2 April 2013 despite him having notified Erinç. It is noted that Alev Coşkun also said in his statement that he objected to Kıraç’s vote not being counted. The following pronouncement was made in the indictment, in which it is stated that Erinç bears prime legal responsibility for the paper’s editorial policy: ‘As per the General Directorate of Foundations inspection board report of 8 March 2017, due to the suspect, as a member of the board of directors of Yeni Gün Haber A.Ş., failing to act as a prudent administrator and having caused the company to suffer gradually increasing loss contrary to the imperative provisions of Article 376 of the Turkish Commercial Code number 6102 and to become insolvent with him remaining inactive, for him to be punished pursuant to Articles 55/2 and 53 of the Turkish Penal Code ...’
It is a crime to establish an Executive Board!
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our paper’s Executive Board Chair Akın Atalay, Attorney-at-Law, and five ByLock-user suspects or six people involved in the FETO investigation. In the indictment, in which the attempt is made to portray the newspaper establishing an Executive Board as evidence of crime, the comments about Atalay are, ‘The suspect attained the position of no less than ‘top level’ official at the newspaper, was greatly influential over the newspaper’s editorial policy in particular, supported the terrorist organisations’ perception management operation in this way, by openly opposing in the tweets he posted the operations targeting FETO/PDY’s press organisations and companies took steps to support the organisation...’ The section of the indictment devoted to Atalay is full of his tweet threads. One of the tweet threads taken up is as follows: ‘1- They ask us or even criticise: “These Gulenists imposed the greatest harm and injustice on you. Why are you defending them?” 2- Yes, great injustice was imposed on this paper and a massive wrong was perpetrated. In the unlawfulness conducted hand in hand with today’s ruling party 3- media organs close to the Gulenists also assumed a role. I think this fact makes our lining up in support of justice, the law and freedoms today more valuable 4- and meaningful. In doing this, we have no expectation of justice being granted by anybody, because we today are not taking a stance 5- premised on being the sufferers of injustice and on the identity and record of those who have been wronged. Indeed, human rights, the law, and rights and freedoms are not solely 6- for the innocent and those who are of a certain opinion, but for everybody. It is time to remember the words of Mary Magdalene “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.’ Another one of the tweets that it is wished to portray as evidence of crime is the following: ‘If only you could have shown one-tenth of the reaction that you showed towards the referee presiding over the Galatasaray-Trabzonspor match towards the disgraceful policies and implementations of those governing the country...’ It is alleged that Atalay, through these tweets, protected FETO and portrayed the legitimate state structure and operations as being more or less the activities of a terrorist organisation, and that these posts had nothing to do with press activities and served manipulative purposes. It is also claimed that Atalay, in ‘failing to act as a prudent administrator,’ caused the company to suffer gradually increasing loss and to become insolvent with him remaining inactive.
‘How did this come about years later?’
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our columnist Hikmet Çetinkaya and three ByLock-user suspects and four people involved in the FETO investigation. The prosecutors’ comments about Çetinkaya are as follow: ‘Despite the suspect having written books years ago about and being known for his critical attitude towards FETO/PYD, he took part in organising the breakfast of the ‘Journalists and Writers Foundation’ known to be close to the organisation in July 2011 and posed in photographs arm in arm with the fugitive suspect Erkam Tufan, who was the former chair of the foundation and is currently under investigation on FETO/PYD grounds, as of this date a pronounced change of attitude towards the organisation was witnessed, this situation was also observed by the press world and was harshly criticised, the suspect also acknowledged albeit for a different reason these closening relations in comments he made to the organisation’s press organ Zaman...’ It is alleged that Çetinkaya in his article entitled ‘How did the teacher gentleman become a terrorist?’ continued in his endeavour to suggest that the Gulenists could not be connected with terrorism. Witness testimony by journalists Mehmet Faraç and Latif Erdoğan, who are hostile towards Cumhuriyet, was also submitted in evidence against Çetinkaya.
‘Defamed the President’
It is alleged that our paper’s former editor-in-chief Can Dündar disclosed the state’s political and military secrets that required to remain confidential by quoting from the FETO/PDY armed terrorist organisation’s pool of information composed of fabricated information through his reports on the intelligence service’s lorries and his articles entitled, ‘Why We are Publishing,’ ‘We are Journalists, not Civil Servants,’ ‘Forget the Threats and Answer these 20 Questions,’ ‘The Bans are a Cover for the Weaknesses,’ ‘Welcome to the Funeral Prayers,’ ‘Rookie Spy’ and ‘It has Made the Envelope full of Money Forgotten.’ It is argued that the publications cannot be accounted for under rights of press freedom-to receive and convey news. It is argued that he endeavoured to defame the President and government and create the impression that there was chaos in the country with the newspaper headlines he ran as editor-in-chief and his publishing policy.
His tweets turned into evidence of crime
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our paper’s editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu and Mehmet Ekinci, a former judge who has been remanded in custody on FETO charges, along with eight ByLock-user suspects and ten people who are suspects in the FETO investigation. It is stated that, for the time he has served as editor-in-chief, he ‘has had responsibility’ for the ‘manipulative news’ that has appeared in the newspaper and the manner in which this news was selected and put across. Sabuncu’s tweets have also been submitted as evidence of crime. It is alleged that Sabuncu attempted with his posts to vilify the operations against Zaman newspaper and portray them as being illegitimate, support the 17 December coup attempt, oppose the Bank Asya operations, make FETO leaders appear likeable and support Özgür Gündem, the PKK/PYD organisation’s propaganda publication.
It is a crime to write ‘Aktakinguparms’!
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our columnist Aydın Engin and the person named Harun Tokak, a Consultation Board Member of the FETO/PYD armed terrorist organisation, thirteen ByLock-user suspects and thirteen people involved in the FETO investigation. In the indictment, in which it is noted that Engin became a columnist at the newspaper following the change of management that occurred at the Cumhuriyet Foundation, his articles are listed as evidence of crime. It is argued that Engin adopted a critical stance in a concealed manner towards actions aimed at the FETO/PDY terrorist organisation with his articles entitled, ‘What has not been/Cannot be Denied since 17 December until Today’ and ‘Who is our boss now?’, and those entitled, ‘Double talk: Coup, parallel state etc ...’ and ‘The hotel in Abant did not host the Gülen Brotherhood’s Abant Meeting’ that were published at T24. It is alleged that Ahmet Kemal Aydoğdu, having the user name @jeansbiri, started the hashtag ‘#Aktakinguparms’ on twitter on 20 October 2016 and Engin wrote an article entitled, ‘AKAF (Ak Armed Forces)’ on 23 September 2016 and engaged in perception management by raising the claim that, ‘The AK Party was establishing its own armed forces.’ It is asserted that Engin tried to thwart and vilify the fight against FETO/PDY with his articles entitled ‘Were you dupes or were you partners?’ and ‘In the Gülenists’ Shop Windows’ that he penned in the aftermath of the coup attempt.
Accused for one of his articles
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our Publication Consultant Kadri Gürsel and 92 ByLock-user suspects and 21 people involved in the FETO investigation. With it noted that he had first-degree signature authorisation at Yenigün Haber Ajansı Basın ve Yayıncılık A.Ş., it is alleged that, with his article entitled, ‘Erdoğan Wants to be our Father’ that he wrote three days before the coup, he clearly and directly tried to create the perception by directly targeting the person of the President that there was an authoritarian regime in Turkey and the suspect is responsible for the radical change that took place in editorial policy and the making of publications of a kind that served the manipulative ends of the FETO/PYD and PKK/KCK organisations.
He did not take CUMOK into account!
It is asserted that there are records of communications between our Readers’ Representative Güray Öz and one ByLock user and one FETO investigation suspect. With it claimed that he was inducted into membership of the foundation management board at the 18 January 2014 election at which İnan Kıraç, Nevzat Tüfekçioğlu and Şükran Soner were purged, it is stated, ‘The suspect made no endeavour in the direction of conveying reactions and disquiet emanating from Cumhuriyet readers (CUMOK) to management, the suspect acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy and is legally responsible for the newspaper’s editorial policy.’
You caused loss to the company!
It is asserted that there are records of communications between Turhan Günay and four people who are FETO investigation suspects, that he had first-degree signature authorisation at Yenigün A.Ş., the suspect acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy and is legally responsible for the newspaper’s editorial policy. It is alleged that in ‘failing to act as a prudent administrator,’ he is also responsible for causing the company to suffer gradually increasing loss.
‘You took Coşkun’s place'
It is asserted in the indictment that there are records of communications between our cartoonist Musa Kart and two people who are ByLock-user suspects and four people undergoing FETO investigation. Even Kart being elected in place of Alev Coşkun to the foundation management board in the election held on 7 October 2013 is portrayed as being a crime. With it noted that Kart was a member of the Foundation Executive Board, it is alleged that, ‘He acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy,’ and he was legally responsible for the newspaper’s publishing policy.
‘Why were you elected to the foundation?’
It is asserted in the indictment that there are records of communications between our columnist Hakan Kara and two people who are ByLock-user suspects and two people undergoing FETO investigation. It is noted that İnan Kıraç resigned, saying, ‘As I have realised that I will be unable to continue Mr İlhan Selçuk’s mission within this structure,’ and another member, Nevzat Tüfekçioğlu, offered his resignation on the grounds of, ‘The newspaper’s bad management in economic terms and its publishing policy.’ It is stated that in the elections held following the resignations, Hakan Kara was elected in place of Tüfekçioğlu. The pronouncement is included, ‘He acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy and is legally responsible for the newspaper’s publishing policy.’
‘You acted in consort with the others’
It is asserted that there are records of communications between Mustafa Kemal Göngür, Attorney-at-Law and four people who are ByLock-user suspects and one person involved in the FETO investigation. With it noted that Göngör was inducted to foundation management board membership in place of İnan Kıraç at the 18 February 2014 election, it is alleged that, ‘He acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy and is legally responsible for the newspaper’s publishing policy.’
‘Erinç proposed him as candidate’
It is asserted that there are records of communications between printing administrator Önder Çelik and three ByLock users and two people who are FETO suspects. It is claimed that Çelik was elected to the management board thanks to İnan Kıraç’s vote being deemed invalid by foundation chair Orhan Erinç at the election held on 2 April 2013 for the place on the management board vacated by the death of Aydın Aybay. It is alleged that he had first-degree signature authorisation at Yenigün A.Ş. and was responsible for the foundation and company making a loss.
‘Acted in consort!’
It is asserted that our paper’s lawyer Bülent Utku had first-degree signature authorisation at Yenigün A.Ş. and there are records of communications with seven ByLock-user suspects and six FETO investigation suspects. It is alleged that he acted in consort with the other suspects who came onto management after 2013 and made a radical change to editorial policy and is legally responsible for the newspaper’s publishing policy. Utku’s punishment is also sought on the charge of making unsecured loans from the foundation to the insolvent company.