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Turkish court sentences director, municipal official to prison over Kobani documentary

Turkish court sentences director, municipal official to prison over Kobani documentary

Xeber24.net – Ahval

A Turkish court on Wednesday sentenced the director of a Kurdish documentary as well as a municipal official who facilitated the production to be showcased in the southeastern province of Batman to over two years each on charges of “conducting propaganda for a terrorist organisation,’’ independent news site T24 reported.

Nû Jîn (New Life) director Veysi Altay and former Batman municipality official Dicle Anter, who had the film showcased at Batman’s Yılmaz Güney Theatre were sentenced to two years and six months and two years and one month in prison, respectively, on charges that stem from the documentary, which narrated the story of three woman living in the Kurdish Syrian town of Kobani as the Islamic State (ISIS) took over in 2014, the site said.

The court also placed a travel ban on the pair, T24 said.

“We no longer know that constitutes a crime and what doesn’t in this country,’’ Anter said following the verdict. ‘’A sentence that could have been suspended if less than two years was transformed into time behind bars.’’

ISIS besieged the mainly Kurdish city of Kobani in late 2014, which lead to 45,000 refugees crossing into Turkey. A number of refugees were stopped at the border and ordered to return to Kobani by Turkish authorities, which caused outrage in Turkey’s Kurdish community.

Protests related to Turkish government’s perceived inaction on Kobani turned into nationwide protests in 2014, during which 53 people were killed.

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