8. Fusün Erdoğan, Turkey
Affiliation: Özgür Radyo
Prison term: Life
Held at: Gebze Women’s Closed Prison
Fusün Erdoğan, former general manager of the leftist Özgür Radyo (The Free Radio), was imprisoned for more than seven years before being sentenced in November 2013 to life in prison on anti-state charges. Authorities said she used radio station assets to support the Marxist Leninist Communist Party, or MLKP, which is banned in Turkey. The only evidence against her was a 40-page document that supposedly included the names and personal information of members of the MLKP. Her case is currently before the Court of Appeals.
In January 2013, Erdoğan, who holds Dutch and Turkish citizenship, wrote a letter from prison that detailed her arrest, her imprisonment without charge, and her legal status. She also said her health has deteriorated significantly while in prison: In addition to high blood pressure, hepatitis B, and cysts in both breasts, she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in November 2012 and underwent surgery.
Key fact: Turkey was the world’s leading jailer of journalists in 2012 and 2013. The country released more than a dozen journalists from jail in 2014.
Key work: Erdoğan’s letter from prison describes her arrest, imprisonment, and legal status.
- Use the hashtag #FreeThePress.
- Call on Turkey’s Constitutional Court, President Abdullah Gül, and Turkish Prime MinisterRecep Tayyip Erdoğan to free Erdoğan.
- Sign a petition to free Turkish journalists.
- Watch a video by Erdoğan’s son, in which he discusses her imprisonment.
- Listen to Erdoğan’s story.
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