Exiled journalist Can Dündar’s assets to be seized unless he returns to Turkey

This statement was originally published on cpj.org on 17 September 2020.

An Istanbul court today announced that Can Dündar, an exiled Turkish journalist living in Germany, would be declared a fugitive and his assets would be seized unless he returns to the country within 15 days, according to news reports.

“Journalist Can Dündar has already paid a high price for his independent journalism, including being forced to leave his homeland behind,” said Gulnoza Said, CPJ’s Europe and Central Asia program coordinator, in New York. “Turkish authorities should immediately revoke today’s court decision to seize the journalist’s assets in Turkey, and cease such vengeful persecution for his critical journalistic work.”In a tweet about the court’s decision, Dündar wrote that authorities were threatening to seize a family home where his mother still lives.

Dündar received CPJ’s International Press Freedom Award in 2016 in recognition of his fight against government harassment and prosecution on anti-state charges while working as the chief editor of pro-opposition daily Cumhuriyet. He now runs the Özgürüz radio station, a broadcaster frequently blocked by Turkish authorities, as CPJ has documented.

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Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) is a network of human rights journalists in Uganda working towards enhancing the promotion, protection and respect of human rights through defending and building the capacities of journalists, to effectively exercise their constitutional rights and fundamental freedoms for collective campaigning through the media.

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