Seda Taşkın, a reporter for the pro-Kurdish Mezopotamya Agency, is serving a seven year and six month sentence on anti-state charges.
Police first detained Taşkın on December 19, 2017, while she was reporting in the eastern Muş region, according to news reports. She was released on probation on December 24, according to the report.
On January 23, 2018, Taşkın was taken back into custody in Ankara, where she is based, after a court in the southeastern city of Bitlis ordered that the journalist be detained for allegedly "being a member of a [terrorist] organization,” according to reports. Taşkın attended the court proceedings via videoconference from Ankara, the reports said.
According to the indictment, which is available online as part of the Current Trial Library, a website that shares copies of indictments from Turkish cases, Taşkın’s journalistic work, social media posts, interviews with sources and employment by a pro-Kurdish agency were cited as evidence against her. The journalist denies the charge.
A court in Muş on October 10, 2018 sentenced Taşkın to seven years and six months in prison, her employer reported. Taşkın attended the hearing via teleconference from the Sincan Women’s Prison, where she is being held.
The court sentenced Taşkın to three years and four months for "making propaganda for a [terrorist] organization" and four years and two months for "aiding and abetting a [terrorist] organization without being a member," according to the report.
In her final statement, after the prosecution’s closing statements, the journalist said she denied the terrorism charges and that she was on trial for her journalistic work and social media posts. Taşkın said she was mistreated by the police while being taken into custody. She said she was handcuffed from behind and told that she would be strip searched. "I was subjected to torture both physically and psychologically" she said. Taşkın said that her past employment for the shuttered Dicle News Agency (DİHA) was being considered evidence of her being a member of a terrorist organization, and she reminded the court that it was a legit agency.