Nedim Sener, Journalist, Author, Named “World Press Freedom Hero” by the International Press Institute
Nedim Şener, (right) an investigative journalist and one of the most prominent victims of the Gülenist Terror Organization (FETÖ), in an interview with Daily Sabah, said he is sure the group was behind the failed July 15 coup attempt and that the CIA was tacitly backing it. Şener, who spent 13 months in jail after writing a book detailing the criminal activities of FETÖ, said the U.S. and FETÖ believed political polarization in Turkey could be used to topple President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and that the nation would not react. Since it failed, FETÖ leader Fethullah Gülen has been trying to shift the blame by arguing that it was a plot by Erdoğan, Şener said.
Sener has served as a journalist for Milliyet and Cumhuriyet, both major national newspapers in Turkey. In 2008, Sener faced charges that would have led to from 28 to 32 years in prison. Officially, these charges related to his book “The Dink murder and the intelligence lies” (“Hrant Dink ve Istihbarat Yalanlari”) alleging that the Turkish government was partly responsible for journalist Hrant Dink’s murder and has failed to investigate the murder properly. However, it should be noted that Sener is also the author of a book, “Ergenekon Belgelerinde: Fethullah Gulen ve Cemaat,” (“Ergenekon Documents: Fethullah Gulen and the [Gulen] Community”) linking Fethullah Gulen to Ergenekon. On June 15, 2010, the International Press Institute named Sener a World Press Freedom Hero. That same month, Sener was acquitted of most of the charges, but still faces some.
8. Journalists who had written about the Gülen machinations in these trials endured slander campaigns and threats of arrests. Fellow journalists Barış Terkoğlu, Barış Pehlivan, Soner Yalçın, Nedim Şener and Ahmet Şık served time because of their work that showed Gülen’s infiltration into the state. Şık was writing a book on Gülen’s presence in the police force while Şener was investigating the links of Gülen’s disciples with the 2007 murder of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink. Now Gülen-linked officers stand trial on the Dink murder case.
Şık and journalist Nedim Şener were jailed as part of the controversial Oda TV case in 2011. Both spent more than a year in prison while awaiting trial before the publication of Şık’s book, titled “The Imam’s Army.” The book focused on the Gülen movement’s followers within the police and the judiciary at a time when the movement and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) were close.
Şık and Şener were eventually freed on March 12, 2012, though Şık was again arrested on Dec. 30, 2016 over several tweets and articles for daily Cumhuriyet.
An Istanbul court on April 12 ordered the acquittal of 13 suspects, including journalists and writers, charged with membership of the Ergenekon organization in the OdaTV case.
The ruling comes six years after the opening of the case, widely thought to have been the work of prosecutors linked to U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen.
In the tenth hearing of the case, the Istanbul 18th court of serious crimes board unanimously acquitted the suspects including journalists Ahmet Şık, Nedim Şener, Soner Yalçın, Yalçın Küçük and former police chief Hanefi Avcı, based on their pleas, expert reports, witness statements and the wider context of the file.
It also noted that the suspects had the right to file a claim for compensation within one year of the verdict being given.
Journalists who had written about the Gülen machinations in these trials endured slander campaigns and threats of a Journalists Barış Terkoğlu, Barış Pehlivan, Soner Yalçın, Nedim Şener and Ahmet Şık served time in prison because of their work that showed Gülen’s infiltration into the state. Şık was writing a book on Gülen’s presence in the police force, while Şener was investigating the links of Gülen’s disciples with the 2007 murder of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink.