British Academic Detained Over ‘PKK Propaganda’ In Istanbul Released
British academic Chris Stephenson, a lecturer in computer science at Istanbul’s Bilgi University, went to the Istanbul’s Çağlayan courthouse on March 15 in a show of support for three Turkish academics detained on March 14, in relation to an investigation into signatories of a petition calling for an end to clashes between security forces and PKK militants in January.
Chris Stephenson was taken into custody on March 15 on suspicion of conducting propaganda for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) because of a Nevruz leaflet in his possession, has been released but still faces the prospect of deportation.
However, he was taken into custody upon a prosecutor’s instruction on accusations of “making propaganda for a terror organization” for possessing a Nevruz leaflet printed by the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).
But Stephenson’s lawyer, Kemal Tuncaelli, said the prosecutor planned to write a written request to the Istanbul Governor’s Office demanding the scholar’s deportation. Tuncaelli said it was not yet clear whether or not the investigation would continue.