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Writer Perihan Magden acquitted

(WiPC/IFEX) - Writer Perihan Magden was acquitted by a court in Istanbul on 27 July 2006. She had been charged under Article 218 of the Turkish Penal Code for having "turned people against military service". The charges relate to an article entitled "Conscientious Objection is a Human Right", published in December 2005. International PEN welcomes the acquittal and hopes that there will be similar outcomes for other writers and journalists who are on trial under this and other penal code articles that contravene international standards safeguarding the right to free expression.

Outside the court, International PEN board member Eugene Schoulgin was stopped from entering the court room to observe the trial. He reports that he and other international observers were blocked from entering by a large number of police, some armed, who informed them that they were following a request from the prosecutors.

WiPC thanks everyone who sent appeals on behalf of Magden.

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