New York, June 9, 2017–Turkish authorities should allow French photographer Mathias Depardon to live and work freely in Turkey, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Depardon’s lawyer, Emine Şeker, told CPJ that the photographer was deported to France today.
French President Emmanuel Macron wrote on Twitter today that he was “very happy” to announce that Depardon would return to France tonight. Şeker told CPJ she was still trying to clarify the conditions of her client’s release, including whether his criminal investigation on charges of “making propaganda for a [terrorist] organization” would remain open. Police detained the photographer, who has lived in Istanbul for five years, in southeastern Turkey on May 8, according to his lawyer and press reports.
“Mathias Depardon’s release is cause for celebration, but he should never have been detained in the first place,” CPJ Europe and Central Asia Program Coordinator Nina Ognianova said. “We call on Turkish authorities to allow Depardon to return to his adopted home in Istanbul should he desire, and to allow him to work without interference.”