Expression Interrupted

Journalists and academics bear the brunt of the massive crackdown on freedom of expression in Turkey. Scores of them are currently subject to criminal investigations or behind bars. This website is dedicated to tracking the legal process against them.

Canan Coşkun acquitted of “insulting the president”

Canan Coşkun acquitted of “insulting the president”

The former Cumhuriyet reporter was on trial over her reporting on the 2015 arrests of journalists Can Dündar and Erdem Gül

Journalist Canan Coşkun appeared before the Istanbul 40th Criminal Court of First Instance on 20 June 2019 in the second hearing of her trial on the charge of “insulting the president.”

The court acquitted Coşkun of the charge.

Coşkun, a former reporter with the Cumhuriyet daily, was on trial for a news story dated 27 November 2015, titled “Erdoğan buyurdu, gazetecilik tutuklandı” (Erdoğan ordered, journalism got arrested), in which she reported about the arrests of Cumhuriyet’s former Editor-in-Chief Can Dündar and Ankara representative Erdem Gül.

P24 monitored the hearing, where Coşkun and her lawyer Abbas Yalçın were in attendance.

Addressing the court for her defense statement, Çoşkun said: “I was the courthouse reporter of Cumhuriyet newspaper at the time. On the day Can Dündar and Erdem Gül were arrested I wrote the story and sent it to my editor. The next day the headline on the front page read “A dark day for the press.” The headline inside was different. No reporter has the authority to intervene in the headline on the front page or on the website.”

Addressing the court following Coşkun, her lawyer stressed that the case was filed more than two years after the news story was published. He requested Coşkun’s acquittal.

Issuing its verdict at the end of the hearing, the court decided that the “act in question did not apply to the article specified in law” therefore ruled for Coşkun’s acquittal.