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Turkish Cypriot journalists released
2002-10-03 11:58:47

Nicosia, Oct 3 (CNA) -- The Turkish occupation regime has released the editor-in-chief of Turkish Cypriot daily ''Afrika'', formerly ''Avrupa'', Sener Levent, and journalist Memduh Ener of the same paper, who were found ''guilty'' of ''libel'' against Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, the Turkish occupation army and ''motherland'' Turkey, and given a six-month ''jail sentence'' each.

Commenting on their release, President of the Union of Cyprus Journalists (UCJ) Andreas Kannaouros said it was a victory of the Turkish Cypriot journalists and others struggling for freedom of expression in the areas occupied by Turkey since its 1974 invasion of the island.

Kannaouros also mentioned UCJ efforts against ''this illegal, brutal 'imprisonment' of the two journalists''.

He added that ''intense pressure was exerted on behalf of international press organisations, the EU, the Council of Europe, the International Press Institute, governments and the UN, which resulted in the release of the Turkish Cypriot journalists''.

Kannaouros pointed out however that ''of course, the journalists and the newspaper are still being persecuted''.|

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