May 23 2019

Turkish police seize the passport of Turkish-German journalist Tolu’s husband

Kurdish-German journalist Meşale Tolu said on Wednesday that Turkish authorities had seized the passport of her husband, who came from Germany to Turkey to attend the trial in which the couple and 25 other defendants are charged with terror offences.

After spending more than eight months in prison with her two-year old son, Tolu, who faces up to 15 years in prison, was released in December 2017 under judicial controls, including a travel ban.

Her husband, Suat Çorlu, a journalist and political activist, was initially detained with Tolu but released one month earlier also under judicial control.

At a hearing on April 28, a Turkish court decided to merge Tolu’s case file with that of another case in which her husband was charged, while lifting Tolu’s travel ban. Çorlu’s travel ban was lifted later at a hearing in October 2018.

The hearing in the new case, in which all 27 defendants have been charged with membership in a terrorist organisation, is scheduled for Thursday. 

“Upon the decision of the Ankara Provincial Security Directorate, my husband’s passport was seized at Sabiha Gökçen airport,” the journalist said on Twitter. “Suat flew from Germany to Istanbul in the evening to follow our hearing tomorrow. Is it a crime to attend, follow our hearings?”