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Lawyer of imprisoned reporter Abdurrahman Gök to file complaint for torture and maltreatment

(BIANET/IFEX) - Servet Özen, the lawyer for Dicle News Agency (DIHA) reporter Abdurrahman Gök, says that an objection to his client's arrest has been rejected. He says that he will file a complaint for torture and maltreatment of his client after seeing the medical file.

Gök was taken into custody while covering the Newroz celebrations in Siirt, southeastern Turkey. On 25 March 2009, he was taken to the Siirt Criminal Court, which ordered his arrest for spreading PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) propaganda. He was later taken to a Siirt prison.

Another reporter from DIHA, Celal Kalpak, who was at the Newroz celebrations in Siirt, told BIANET what he witnessed: "When Gök was taken into custody, we were at the exit of the celebration area. The police harassed him and then took him into custody. When I objected, a police chief said, 'Your friend has thrown stones at the police.' I told him that that was not credible, that Gök was just covering the event as a reporter, and that the detention was arbitrary."

Kalpak said that there were different accusations leveled at Gök all the time. "First they said that he had thrown stones at the police. When that was not credible, they said that he had manipulated the crowd; finally, they said that he was taken into custody for terrorist propaganda because he had copied down the slogans shouted and written on placards and because he had been linked to Roj TV."

Özen has argued that Gök suffered torture and mistreatment when he was taken into custody. His medical report from the Siirt State Hospital is currently with the prosecution. His lawyer has announced that as soon as he is able to examine them, he will file a criminal complaint against those responsible.

DIHA has also called for the release of its reporters Ali Bulus, Mehmet Karaaslan, Faysal Tunç and Behdin Tunç, who are all in prison for alleged connections to the PKK. It is not yet clear whether the arrests were related to their journalistic activities.

Updates the Gok case:

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