Turkish court censors book before publication

An Istanbul court has ordered the seizure of all of investigative journalist Ahmet Sik’s work on his incomplete book The Army of the Imam. His manuscript explores the connection between the police and the group headed by Turkish Imam Fethullah Gülen. Sik was close to finishing the work when he was arrested in March. Gülen is now living in exile in the USA. It has been alleged that the book will appear online on 11 April.

Appeal against book confiscation order denied by Turkish court

A Turkish court has denied an appeal of a court order for the confiscation of the unpublished book “İmamın Ordusu” or The Imams Army, written by politically outspoken (and arrested) journalist Ahmet Şık. The court claimed that the unpublished draft had been edited by Ergenekon, the alleged coup-plotting organization, and declared the manuscript to be an “illegal organizational document.” Last week the police were ordered to seize multiple copies of the document by the court. Anyone who has refused to hand over copies of the draft is to be charged with ”aiding and abetting a criminal organization.”

Protesters in Istanbul demand journalists’ release

Thousands of people gathered in the centre of Istanbul on Sunday to protest against the imprisonment of journalists Ahmet Sik and Nedim Sener. The reporters were detained as part of an official crackdown over the alleged Ergenekon plot.  The demonstration was organised by the Freedom for Journalists platform (GÖP) to highlight the abuse of press freedom in Turkey. They are also campaigning for changes to national laws, in particular the Turkish Criminal Law.