Calling Turkish authorities to stop criminalising journalists

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is backing the statement sent by its affiliates TGS, TGC and DISK Basin-Is calling the Turkish authorities to stop the criminalisation of journalists and media workers in Turkey. On 25/12/2016, the following journalists and media workers Tunca Öğreten (freelance), Mahir Kanaat (accountant for BirGün daily), Ömer Celik (DIHABER news director), Metin Yoksa (DIHABER correspondent) and Eray Saygin have been detained by police and no explanation has been provided for these arrests. “You cannot hide the truth by jailing journalists”, said Journalists Union of Turkey (TGS) in a statement. DISK-Basin Is underlines the fact that…

Turkey: Organising journalists under the state of emergency

The regional meeting of EFJ-IFJ affiliates from the Balkans and Eastern Europe successfully took place in Istanbul on 29-30 November 2016. The meeting was hosted by the Journalists Union of Turkey (TGS) and the Istanbul office of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) who are financially supporting the event with the Swedish Union To Union global trade union programme. The gathering of more than 10 international journalists representatives showing solidarity under the state of emergency with so many journalists in jail (over 120), under prosecution (thousands), without job (over 10.000) was warmly welcomed by the colleagues and local media.   The event has primarily focused on…

Turkish government shuts down 15 Kurdish media outlets

The Turkish government issued on Saturday 29 October a decree shutting down 15 Kurdish media outlets: 11 newspapers, two news agencies and three magazines. The latest closures bring the number of media outlets shut down under state of emergency in Turkey to 168. The Turkish government declared a state of emergency on 20 July, following the failed coup attempt on 15 July. This situation allows the government to close any media organization by issuing a cabinet decree. Here is the list of media outlets targeted by the decree issued on Saturday: Newspapers: Özgür Gündem, Azadiya Welat, Batman Çağdaş , Cizre Postası…

Turkey: Day of Action Today #FreeThemAll

Ninety journalists are currently in jail in Turkey for doing their job. Critical voices must not be silenced!  Today, on Friday 21, world journalists will sponsor journalists in jail in Turkey in a show of solidarity. Take action! How? Pick the name of a journalist jailed in Turkey from the list below, add the name of the journalist on an A4 paper, take a picture of yourself holding the sign and post it on social media #FreeThemAll Sign the petition. It will automatically send an email to President Erdogan via his spokesperson   This work can be done anytime throughout the…

Turkey: 90 journalists in jail – have your say!

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is joining the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) in its global solidarity action on 21 October to support journalists in Turkey and our affiliates the Journalists’ union of Turkey (TGS), the Progressive Journalists’ Association (PJA), the Association of journalists of Turkey (TGC) and DİSK Basın-İş. The action is part of the IFJ and EFJ campaign Set journalism free in Turkey that both federations have been running together since 2010. It consists of a one-day show of solidarity action where free journalists can sponsor jailed journalists in Turkey on social media. The action includes an online petition calling on…

TGS elects its youngest president with a gender balanced board

Journalists Union of Turkey has elected the youngest president of his history during its 21th General Meeting. The equal gender balance at the new TGS board is maintained with an age average of 35 years. EFJ-IFJ and DJV (Germany) representatives shared solidarity messages at the General Meeting and met with banned media representatives. Journalists Union of Turkey (TGS) organised its 21th Ordinary General Meeting, chaired by Canan Onurer (President of Basin-Sen in Cyprus), in Istanbul on 8 and 9 October 2016 with the participation of members, delegates and international guests. The General Meeting elected Gökhan Durmus (former TGS Istanbul Branch) at 33 years…

Turkey’s journalists prosecution marathon has started !

This morning (21/09/2016), the Caglayan Court of Justice in Istanbul heard 5 different prosecution cases against journalists. The EFJ-IFJ and its affiliates TGS (Journalists Union of Turkey), DISK-Basin-Is (Journalists Union of Turkey from DISK) and TGC (Journalists Association of Turkey) have been able to observe the following cases : the appeal in the MIT Trucks case where journalists Can Dündar and Erdem Gül  working for Cumhuriyet newspaper who were sentenced to 5 years in jail for revealing state secrets and arms trafficking between Turkish intelligence services (MIT) and Syrian armed rebel groups. The hearing was held in secret but this did not…

Turkey: solidarity with a newspaper is not a crime

The first hearing at Istanbul court of justice was this morning (20/09/2016) against journalists Ayse Düzkan, Ragip Duran, Hüseyin Akyol and Inan Kizilkaya. The four journalists are being prosecuted for participating in a solidarity campaign with the Kurdish daily newspaper Özgür Gündem. After 20 minutes hearing, the judges decided to merge this case with 20 other similar cases and to resume the hearing on 15th December 2016. Before the case started, supporters gathered outside the court house to make public statements. The EFJ-IFJ representatives, Barry White and Mehmet Koksal, were present along with DISK Basin-Is members (journalists union), TGS members (journalists’…

International civil society organisations condemn crackdown on freedom of expression in Turkey

From 31 August to 2 September, an international delegation of civil society organisations visited Istanbul to demonstrate solidarity with writers, journalists and media outlets in Turkey. The failed coup of 15 July, in which at least 265 people were killed, has traumatised the Turkish population and the government must bring those responsible for the violence to account. However, this must be done on the basis of specific, individual evidence of involvement in a crime and with full respect for international standards on the right to freedom of expression, the right to liberty and security and the right to a fair…

Turkey: Evrensel journalists must be released immediately

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is backing the urgent call of his affiliates in Turkey (TGS & TGC) demanding the immediate release of Turkish journalists Cemil Ugur and Halil Ibrahim Polat detained since end-August 2016 at the province of Mersin (Turkey) while reporting for the daily newspaper Evrensel.   According to their lawyer, both journalists still in detention under the state of emergency “are exposed to insults and threats in prison” and the local police refuse to give further details about their situation. The EFJ and its affiliates are strongly concerned about the situation of journalists, the length of their detention and the alleged threats…

Turkey: International community must take a strong stand against freedom violations

Attacks targeting the media in Turkey have led the International and European Federations of Journalists (IFJ/EFJ) to alert the Council of Europe about a series of new press freedom violations. The federations are calling on the International and European communities to take concrete steps against the Turkish government’s assaults on fundamental human rights that are contrary to international and European conventions. Mustafa Cambaz, a photojournalist for the Turkish Daily Yeni Safak was killed during the attempted coup in Turkey on 15 July. In the early hours of Saturday 16 July, Turkish soldiers who attempted to overthrow the government seized control…

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