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17 suspects including Ilıcak, Altan brothers appear in court for second hearing

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Seventeen suspects including journalists Nazlı Ilıcak, Ahmet Altan and his brother Mehmet Altan appeared in court on Tuesday for the second hearing of their trial, the Cumhuriyet daily reported.

The suspects, who are being held as part of an investigation into the Gülen movement, which the government accuses of masterminding a failed coup on July, 2016, are charged with attempting to overthrow the constitutional order, the Turkish government and the Turkish Parliament.

Ilıcak, who worked for the Bugün daily as a columnist, said in her defense that she was not presented any concrete evidence as to how she planned and supported the coup attempt.

“We journalists cannot be judged based on our articles, which do not constitute a crime. Which sentence is it that the prosecutor is claiming to have ‘evoked the coup’? He is not indicating any specific sentence. He is speaking in general terms. When did I praise the coup?” asked Ilıcak in her defense.

An indictment drafted by the İstanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office seeks three consecutive life sentences for former Zaman daily CEO Ekrem Dumanlı, former Today’s Zaman Editor-in-Chief Bülent Keneş, Samanyolu TV Washington representative Şemsettin Efe, Zaman daily journalist Abdülkerim Balcı, former deputy editor-in-chief of Zaman Mehmet Kamış, Zaman executive Faruk Kardıç, Zaman daily design director Fevzi Yazıcı, Zaman brand manager Yakup Şimşek, Zaman culture and arts editor Ali Çolak, journalists Nazlı Ilıcak, Emre Uslu, Tuncay Opçin, Ahmet Altan and Mehmet Altan, Professor Osman Özsoy and academics Şükrü Tuğrul Özşengül and Tibet Murad Sanlıman.

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