Hanifi Barış, an attorney and academic who signed the declaration entitled "We will not be a party to this crime" prepared by the Academics for Peace and was arrested on July 4, 2018 due to his social media posts, had his first hearing today (September 18).
Barış, who was arrested on the ground that "there is a suspicion of escape and hiding" and was held in Silivri No. 5 Closed Prison in İstanbul, has been released on probation.
The court board consisted of Presiding Judge Mustafa Çakar; members Barış Öztürk, Nejdet Tarhan; and Public Prosecutor Arif Kaplan.
Hanifi Barış's attorneys Mehmet Doğan, Ahmet Baran Çelik and Hüseyin Boğatekin also appeared in court.
"My posts do not constitute a crime"
In his first hearing held today, Barış presented his statement of defence. In his defence, Barış said,
"I do not think that my social media posts constitute a crime. I am in a dreadful shock. The highest priority of academics is to share the information that they obtain and social media is one of its tools."
Speaking after the statement of defence presented by his client, attorney Ahmet Baran stated that they primarily demand that Barış be released from prison, adding that their second demand is his acquittal.
The court board has ruled that Hanifi Barış shall be released with an international travel ban. It has also requested that the thesis of Barış, which was one of the subject matters of this trial, be presented to court until the next hearing. The next hearing will be held on December 11. (HA/SD)
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