Turkey seeks up to 15 years in prison for German-Turkish journalist Deniz Yücel

A Turkish prosecutor on Thursday demanded Turkish-German journalist Deniz Yücel, who works for Die Welt, face a jail sentence of between two and 15 years on terrorism charges, state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Yücel spent nearly one year behind bars in Turkey after being detained on terrorism and propaganda charges in February 2017 for an interview with outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Cemil Bayık. The journalist, released from released from jail in Feb. 2018 pending trial, has since returned to Germany.

Turkey’s Constitutional Court ruled in June that Yücel’s detention was illegal and robbed him of his personal freedom and security, in addition to his freedom of speech and freedom of the press.

The prosecutor demanded Yücel face prison sentences for terrorism propaganda and insulting the Turkish nation. 

“From the plea we understand that the prosecutor either did not read the Constitutional Court’s decision or does not take the court seriously,” Yücel’s lawyer, Veysel Ok, said in court.

The next hearing of the trial is scheduled for April 2.