Turkish court orders conditional release of two more journalists: AFP


Silivri (Turkey) (AFP)

An Istanbul court on Friday ordered the conditional release of two more journalists in the trial on terror-related charges of staff from the opposition Cumhuriyet newspaper.

Cumhuriyet's editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu and investigative reporter Ahmet Sik were ordered to be freed from jail by the judge after a day-long hearing, an AFP reporter said.

However they still remain charged and on trial.

One more detained suspect, the paper's chairman Akin Atalay, was ordered to stay in jail.

The three were the last remaining suspects in the case to be held behind bars ahead of a final verdict. Atalay is now the only suspect in the case still held in prison.

A total of 17 staff from Cumhuriyet (Republic) face terror charges in the case, with most now free pending the conclusion of the trial after a number of conditional releases over the last year.

The next hearing in the case was set for March 16. The suspects face up to 43 years in prison if convicted but it remains unclear when the final verdict will be delivered.

Sabuncu and Atalay have spent the last 495 days in jail and Sik, who was detained a little after the initial wave of arrests, 434 days.