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Critical journalist Aksoy arrested again to serve remaining sentence

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Critical Turkish journalist Murat Aksoy was sent back to prison on Thursday after a regional appeals court last month upheld a two year, one month sentence handed down by a local court on a conviction of supporting a terrorist organization.

Aksoy was not convicted of membership in the organization.

Aksoy was first arrested in September 2016 along with 28 other journalists as part of a crackdown targeting alleged followers and sympathizers of the Gülen movement.

He was released pending appeal in October 2017.

The movement is accused by the Turkish government of orchestrating a failed coup in 2016 although it strongly denies any involvement.

Since then, over 200 journalists have been put behind bars primarily on coup-related charges.

In a tweet posted on Thursday, Aksoy wrote: “From this day on, we will be away from each other for a while. My trip is to the prison again. Hope to see you as soon as possible. Take good care of yourselves and our country.”

Aksoy’s lawyer, Yaman Akdeniz, who also posted a tweet, said Aksoy turned himself in and was subsequently arrested and sent to Metris Prison. The lawyer said the prison administration would consider allowing Aksoy to serve the rest of his sentence under release on judicial probation.

In a similar development, columnist and former pop singer Atilla Taş was sent to prison on Nov.  9 after the same regional court upheld his conviction.

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