Greek Journalists to Sue Turkish Religious Authority For Destroyed Cameras 

Earthquake victims mourn relatives who lost their lives in the powerful earthquakes, in Kahramanmaras, Turkey, 5 March 2023. Photo: EPA-EFE/SEDAT SUNA

The reporters were in Turkey covering the deadly earthquake that killed more than 50,000 people and left millions without homes. All three are freelancers and received official journalistic accreditation from the Turkish state.

Their trip on February 16 was to visit a mass grave in the Narlica district in Turkey's Hatay province that was devastated by the quakes. Under the guidance of Turkish soldiers, who indicated to them to follow another car where two Turks and a German journalist were riding, they headed to an area where they could freely take photos.

Zilos had reached the field where victims of the earthquake had been buried when his colleagues called and informed him they could not enter the area. Then, two men in blue vests who were allegedly workers for the Diyanet, asked Zilos to follow them.

"They took me to an office. There I tried to explain that I didn't take any pictures, just one with my cell phone. I showed them my camera and my cell phone. After a while, they brought their Turkish colleagues, and Kyriakos and Victoras, who were waiting in the car. The Turkish colleagues informed us that they would confiscate our equipment for three months. They took the cameras from Kyriakos and me, Victoras's cell phone, and from the Turkish colleagues, a drone," Zilos told BIRN.

"The fact that we are from Greece played no role in their decision to destroy our stuff. It wasn't even commented on where we were from. Besides, they also broke the drone of our Turkish colleagues," Antonopolous told BIRN.

According to their lawyer, Veysel Ok, co-chair of the Media and Law Studies...

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