Austrian journalist freed from prison but barred from leaving Turkey

Austrian journalist Max Zirngast hugs a relative as he is released from Sincan prison in Ankara on December 24, 2018. (AFP)

An Austrian student and freelance journalist has been released from a prison in Turkey but barred from leaving the country.

Austria’s apa news agency on Tuesday cited Austrian Foreign Ministry spokesman Peter Guschelbauer as saying 29-year-old Max Zirngast was released from the high-security Sincan 2 prison near Ankara.

Zirngast was jailed in September after Turkey accused him and two others of “membership in an armed terrorist organization.” They were accused of links to the Turkish Communist Party/Kivilcim. If convicted, Zirngast could get a prison sentence of up to 10 years.

Zirngast has contributed to left-wing publications. He also is a student studying political science
Ties between Turkey and the European Union have been strained over the arrests of foreign journalists and others in Turkey. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has demanded Zirngast’s release.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:58 - GMT 06:58
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