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Austrian arrested in Turkey released but barred from leaving the country

Handout by Re:Volt
Handout by Re:Volt   -   Copyright  Handout by Re:Volt
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A court in Turkey agreed to release an Austrian activist who was arrested three months ago, his lawyer said.

Max Zirngast, a political science student who writes for online publication Re:volt, has however been banned from leaving the country until judicial proceedings take place.

The student had been taken into custody in September prompting a demand from Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz for an explanation from Ankara for why he had been detained.

Zirngast is accused of being a member of a leftist terrorist organisation as a result of articles he wrote about Turkey and for his participation in demonstrations in the country, his lawyer Murat Yilmaz said.

Yilmaz said the court accepted an indictment against Zirngast but decided to release him on Monday.

"Normally, he would not be released before the first trial but today the court set the trial date for April 11 and released him," Yilmaz said.

Two Turkish citizens who were arrested and jailed in the same case and like Zirngast are accused of being members of a terrorist organisation were released as well, Yilmaz said.

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