Turkish prosecutor seeks up to 9 years, 4 months for novelist Aslı Erdoğan

Novelist Aslı Erdoğan speaks to media after being released from the Bakırköy prison on December 29, 2016 in Istanbul. An İstanbul court on December 29 ordered the release of one of Turkey's most celebrated novelists after over four months in jail on charges of terror propaganda, as the authorities detained a leading investigative journalist over his tweets. / AFP PHOTO / OZAN KOSE

A Turkish prosecutor has demanded up to nine years, four months in prison for novelist and journalist Aslı Erdoğan for allegedly disseminating terrorist propaganda, Deutsche Welle Turkish service reported on Monday.

The prize-winning author faced terrorism-related charges as part of the trial of former executives and employees of the Özgür Gündem newspaper.

The prosecutor sought the same sentence for Bilir Kaya, the daily’s former editor-in-chief.

Other former executives Eren Keskin, İnan Kızılkaya and Kemal Sancılı face prison sentences of up to 15 years for alleged membership in terrorist groups.

The daily, which was known for its pro-Kurdish editorial line, was shut down in 2016 by an emergency decree-law adopted by the government.

Erdoğan was arrested in August 2016 as part of the investigation into the newspaper.

After her release pending trial in December 2016, she went to Germany, where she has been living in self-imposed exile ever since.

Earlier this year, she gave an interview to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle in which she expressed pessimism about ever returning to Turkey.

Erdoğan’s two books, “Kırmızı Pelerinli Kent” (The City in Crimson Cloak) and “Taş Bina ve Diğerleri” (The Stone Building and Other Places), were translated into English, and she received the 2018 Simone de Beauvoir Prize, an award for human rights activists fighting for women’s freedoms.

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