Turkey: AFP reporter assaulted by the police to be paid compensation

Turkey: AFP reporter assaulted by the police to be paid compensation
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Turkish Interior Ministry should pay a compensation of 30,000 TL to reporter Bulent Kilic who had been subjected to "disproportionate use of police powers," an Istanbul court has said.

A Turkish court ruled to disproportionate use of police powers on Monday in a case in which the police are accused of physically assaulting a reporter during a Pride Week march in 2021.

Several police officers had forced Agence France-Presse (AFP) reporter Bulent Kilic to the ground and pressed on his neck at the Pride march in Istanbul on 26 June 2021. Kilic was subsequently taken into custody.

Images of his arrest were widely covered and shared on social media, sparking reactions.

The court ordered 30,000 TL (approximately $1,600) to be paid in compensation to Kilic.

The two police officers involved in the case are being subjected to a criminal investigation on accusations of misconduct and inflicting injury.

Veysel Ok, Kilic's lawyer and chair of the Media and Law Studies Association, said that the court's decision once more reminds everyone that the police should act lawfully in incidents involving journalists.

"The Interior Ministry should charge the compensation from the involved police officers so that the police stop acting arbitrarily in the streets," Ok said, adding that the decision was a positive one for the profession of journalism.