Journalist sentenced for calling Ankara bombing a massacre

Journalist Mehmet Ali Ertaş has received prison sentence for calling Ankara bombing of 10 October 2015 a “massacre”.

Hearing in the case against Mezopotamya Agency (MA) editor, journalist Mehmet Ali Ertaş and reporter Metin Bekiroğlu for the closed Dicle News Agency (DİHA) was held at Diyarbakır 9th Heavy Penal Court today. One to five years prison sentence is sought for both of the journalists who are accused of “spreading terror propaganda” on social media.

Journalist Ertaş was asked by the chief judge about his new year celebration message for 2015 on social media, and his posts about the Ankara massacre of 10 October 2015. Accused of calling the bombing a massacre, Ertaş stated that his social media posts do not constitute a crime.

The court board sentenced Ertaş to 1 year and 3 months in prison for “publicly insulting the state” and “spreading terror propaganda”, and postponed the execution of sentence.

Hearing in the case against journalist Metin Bekiroğlu, who faces same charges due to his social media posts, and for whom one to five years prison sentence is sought, was adjourned to 28 February 2018.