Mezopotamya News Agency (MA) reporter Zeynep Durgut was taken into custody in a house raid in Cizre district in Turkey’s southeastern province of Şırnak (Şırnex) on February 14, 2022.
Durgut was detained in a house raid, handcuffed behind her back, and taken to the Şırnak Security Directorate. Durgut’s statement was taken at the security directorate after two days in custody yesterday (February 16). Durgut’s journalist activities were treated as evidence, and she was also asked questions about the news she had shared on her social media accounts during the interrogation.
The journalists – Durgut and her four colleagues had been charged with reporting on Osman Şiban and Servet Turgut, two Kurdish villagers who had been thrown from a helicopter in Van’s Çatak district. Journalist Durgut and her four colleagues were charged with “membership of organization” over their news, but they were acquitted a year later, on January 6, 2022.
A social media campaign was also started for journalist Zeynep Durgut, who was detained in Cizre district, with the hashtag #Zeynep Durgut’a Özgürlük (Freedom for Zeynep Durgut). Several journalists, politicians, institutions and non-governmental organizations supported the campaign.
— Dicle Fırat Gazeteciler Derneği (@DFGDernegi) February 16, 2022
Dicle Fırat Journalists Association (DFG) stated the following on its official Twitter account :
“She has been detained many times before. Each time she was subjected to different interrogation process. However, Zeynep’s only fault was being a journalist. ”
— TGS Kadın ve LGBTİ+ Komisyonu (@tgskadinLGBTI) February 17, 2022
Journalist Union of Turkey (TGS) on the other hand shared the message ” Journalism is not a crime! ” for Durgut.
Zeynep Durgut is a journalist, reaction against unlawful detentions!
Gazeteci #ZeynepDurgut, 4 meslektaşı ile birlikte hak ihlallerini haberleştirerek kamu yararına olan mesleklerini yerine getirdikleri için terörizm suçlamasıyla yargılanmış ve 6 Ocak'ta beraat etmişti. Durgut, 41 gün sonra ters kelepçe ile gözaltına alındı.#ZeynepDurgutaÖzgürlük pic.twitter.com/IcRsoSu0GC
— MLSA (@mlsaturkey) February 16, 2022
Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA) also joined to the campaign stating:
” Zeynep Durgut and four colleagues were put on trial for reporting the violations of rights and doing their profession charged with “terrorism” and acquitted on January 6. Durgut was detained again with reverse handcuffs 41 days later.”