Sister of terror charge journalist held in Turkey dismisses claims against him


The sister of a British video journalist who has been arrested in Turkey on terror charges has dismissed the accusations as "ludicrous".

Alex Pendlebury, the sister of Vice News cameraman Philip Pendlebury told ITV Granada News "it doesn't feel real" after learning of her brother's detainment.

Mr Pendlebury, of Wigan, who is 30 on Friday is accused of assisting Islamic State along with correspondent Jake Hanrahan and a Turkey-based colleague, Mohammed Ismael Rasool.

They had been filming clashes between police and youth members of the pro-Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) last Thursday in the south-east city of Diyarbakir.

Vice News has described the charges against them as "baseless and false" and an "attempt to intimidate and censor their coverage".

Miss Pendlebury told ITV Granada News: "It's just like a nightmare, it doesn't feel real.

"In my head I think yeah, they will come home but it's just a case of when, but it's like, is it going to be in months or is it going to be in years - you don't know what the time frame is. You just sit and wait, that's all it is a waiting game."

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said Britain expected Turkey to uphold its obligations to freedom of express under international agreements.

"Respect for freedom of expression and the right of media to operate without restriction are fundamental in any democratic society," spokeswoman said.

"Turkey is a state party to the European Convention on Human Rights and UN Declaration of Human Rights. We would expect the Turkish authorities to uphold the obligations enshrined in those agreements."

Mr Pendlebury had filmed in countries including Iraq, Afghanistan and North Korea, Mr Hanrahan had also written for The Guardian, the Independent, Wired, and Rolling Stone Middle East.