“A bitter aftertaste remains”

Deniz Yucel © private/Deniz Yucel

Deniz Yucel spoke out in a video message. The journalist laments the circumstances of his release and thanks his supporters. State Department reiterates there have been no "dirty deals".

After his return to Germany, journalist Deniz Yucel has criticized the circumstances of his release from Turkish custody. Still on 13. A routine detention review on Feb. 2 had revealed the "continuation of pre-trial detention," and he was released just three days later, Yucel said in a first video message after his release, posted on Facebook late Friday night by "Freundeskreis #Free Deniz".

The German Foreign Office announced that it would now use the same force to help other unjustly imprisoned people in Turkey.

Even Yucel does not know why

In the video, Yucel thanked the German government for its efforts, as well as his lawyers, family and all supporters who stood by him during his year in prison. He does not know the reasons for both his detention a year ago and his release on Friday, he said. Still, he said, everyone actually knows that neither has anything to do with "law, justice and the rule of law". Of course, he is happy to be free, but a "bitter aftertaste" remains.

In his video message, Yucel also recalled other journalists arrested in Turkey "who have done nothing but practice their profession," as well as detainees "who are in prison for no other reason than that they have an oppositional opinion".

What does the pope say about the ie?

After his surprising release, Yucel had still landed in Berlin-Tegel on Friday evening. The 44-year-old had been in pretrial detention for more than a year without charge near Istanbul. An Istanbul court on Friday accepted charges of "propaganda for a terrorist organization" and "inciting the people to hatred and hostility". For this, Yucel faces between four and 18 years in prison. At the same time, however, the court ordered Yucel's release from custody without imposing an exit ban.

Pope Francis urged on Twitter back in January: "I would like to invite everyone to promote a journalism for peace, a journalism made by persons and for persons." Meanwhile, he had not commented on the case of Yucel.

Reactions to the Freilang

The Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office, Michael Roth (SPD), stressed on Saturday that it is now necessary to continue talking with the Turkish side. There are still five German citizens in custody in Turkey presumably for political reasons, he said. In addition, there are a large number of journalists, artists and scientists who are presumably innocent in Turkish prisons, Roth said on the Inforadio of Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB).

At the same time, the Minister of State reiterated that there had been "no deals of any kind and certainly no dirty deals" in the Yucel case, i.e. no arms concessions. Turkey could expect "nothing from Germany – except that we remain in conversation". Sensitive arms ies would only be resolved by the new federal government, said the acting minister of state at the Foreign Office. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel (SPD) had also stressed on Friday evening in the "ARD Tagesthemen": "There is no deal, neither dirty, nor clean."

Union faction leader Volker Kauder stressed that there is "still a long way to go" before relations with Turkey are normalized. With Yucel's release, problems in bilateral relations have not yet been resolved. "We are only thinking of other detainees, including Germans, who are also sitting in prisons under conditions that are questionable under the rule of law," Kauder told the "Rheinische Post" (Online). Yucel's release is to be welcomed, but does not outweigh the injustice done to journalist.

Ex-Green Party leader Cem ozdemir Continued to call for a tough stance with Turkey despite Yucel's release. Germany should threaten economic sanctions if Ankara does not return to the rule of law, he told the "Passauer Neue Presse" (Saturday).

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