Turkey: Vice News media worker released after 131 days in jail

Local fixer and interpreter working for US-based media outlet Vice News Mohammed Rasool was relased on 5 January following 131 days of detention in a Turkish jail as “a protective measure”, media reported.

Vice News denounced that the media worker is still not free to leave the country and must report twice a week to a police station.

Rasool and his Vice News colleagues, British journalists Jake Hanrahan and Philip Pendlebury, were arrested on 27 August while filming clashes between the security forces and youth members of the outlawed pro-Kurdish PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) in the southeastern Turkish province of Diyarkabir. They were all accused of working on behalf of a terrorist organisation and assisting the Islamic State, media added.

Following heavy pressure from international media rights groups and the UK government, the British journalists were released but Rasool remained behind bars. 

The case was reported by the IFJ and the EFJ, to the Council of Europe’s Platform for the protection and safety of journalists and also to the Mapping Media Freedom project. Both Federations have welcomed the released of the Turkish media worker.

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