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Erdogan on German journalist: 'Thank God he was arrested'

World

Istanbul – Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday accused a jailed Turkish-German journalist of being a terrorist agent, adding "Thank God he has been arrested", comments likely to cause further unease in Berlin over the incident.

Erdogan, who was speaking at a meeting of an Islamic foundation in Istanbul, said the reporter, Deniz Yucel of Germany's Die Welt newspaper, would be tried by Turkey's independent judiciary.

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Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Picture: Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Press Service, Pool Photo via AP

Authorities arrested Yucel, a dual Turkish and German national, last month on charges of propaganda in support of a terrorist organisation and inciting the public to violence.

He was initially detained after he reported on emails that a leftist hacker collective had purportedly obtained from the private account of Berat Albayrak, Turkey's energy minister and Erdogan's son-in-law.

He is the first German journalist to be detained in a Turkish crackdown following the failed July 15 coup that has frequently targeted the media. Berlin has said that a separate claim that Yucel was working as a German spy was "absolutely baseless".

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