Turkey : #JournalismIsNotaCrime

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#GazetecilikSuçDegildir /  #JournalismIsNotaCrime

Campaign to set journalism free, develop trade union rights and defend freedom of expression in Turkey

The overall objective is to promote and protect fundamental rights through enhancing the role of journalists in promoting democracy, good governance and public’s right to access information. Freedom of expression is an enabling right for other human rights. Freedom of expression through quality journalism enables the abuse of other human rights to be exposed and those responsible to be held accountable. Strengthening the position of journalists and their ability to perform their role in serving the public with informed independent critical journalism is the bedrock of democracy.

Specific objectives include:

• Improve journalists’ rights, safety and independence through a strengthened Journalists’ Union of Turkey (TGS) that can protect professional and labour rights and improve conditions;
• End judicial harassment of journalists and the release of remaining jailed journalists.
• Improve coverage of equality and minority issues by media and improve treatment of minorities in media
At the heart of the specific objectives is the need to build a strong national journalists’ union that can protect and represent its members. A strong journalists’ union will promote the profession, promote the rights of its workers and the standards of journalism. It will engage employers, government and civil society on the need to protect quality, independent journalism as a lifeblood of society. It will unite the many different and diverse voices around the central principles of independent ethical journalism and the need to protect everyone’s right to contribute to it.

Activities

  • Work Package 1: Capacity building programme to audit, reform, equip and provide 3 leadership trainings of TGS staff, leaders and activists in Istanbul on union leadership, negotiating and campaigning
  • Work Package 2: 30 Recruitment activities at workplaces, 10 employer negotiations:
  • Work Package 3: Opening a new TGS branch /solidarity office in Diyarbakir
  • Work Package 4: 3 safety trainings for 60 journalists in South east Turkey on hostile environments, digital security, PTSD and first aid.
  • Work Package 5: Press Freedom, trial Monitoring and advocacy campaign with legal support co-ordinated nationally and internationally
  • Work Package 6: Journalists and unionists international advocacy and networking
  • Work Package 7: Women and LGBTI equality Commission campaign for equal treatment and improved reporting of equality issues.

#EU4humanrights


Actions

Mission to Turkey: press freedom remains in crisis

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined seven other organisations on a joint mission to Turkey, led by the International Press Institute (IPI). Despite some glimmers of hope, press freedom in the country remains in crisis. International press freedom groups and professional organisations reported today that press freedom and the rule of law in Turkey remain in crisis despite grounds for very cautious optimism, such as yesterday’s ruling releasing several former Cumhuriyet journalists. Over three days this week, the international press freedom delegation held meetings with journalists, civil society, the judiciary and the authorities to assess planned reforms and the…

IPI Joint press freedom mission to Turkey

The International Press Institute (IPI) is organizing a joint mission to Turkey of international organizations scheduled to be held between 11-13 September visiting both İstanbul and Ankara. This international mission will be organized by IPI with the support of partner organizations joining the mission. Representatives of the following international press freedom and freedom of expression organizations have been invited: IPI, RSF, A19, CPJ, Norwegian PEN, ECPMF, European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), PEN International, IFEX, Free Press Unlimited, Index on Censorship. The EFJ will be represented by Mustafa Kuleli (TGS), newly-elected member of the EFJ Steering Committee.

Turkish court imposes access block on news portals

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) calls on Turkish authorities to cancel the outrageous decision of Ankara 3rd Peace Judge to block access to 136 websites and social media accounts. Ankara 3rd Peace Judge Hasan Demirtas decided on 16 July to block access to 136 internet resources, including bianet and Gazete Fersude news portals, on the basis of “national security” (article 8/A of İnternet Law). The ban targets 15 websites and dozens of social media accounts (on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest). The court’s unjustified ruling prevents access to at least 200,000 news stories in bianet, which has been broadcasting…

Turkish think-tank report escalates harassment of journalists

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and 20 other human rights and freedom of expression organisations condemn a Turkish pro-government think-tank’s report that accuses leading international media of being biased against the government and singles out their correspondents for attack. The organisations regard the report as a dangerous escalation in the harassment of journalists. As mentioned in our prior joint EFJ-IFJ statement the report by the Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA), a think-tank created by İbrahim Kalın, who is nowadays an adviser to President Erdoğan,  is billed as an academic study of the news coverage of the…

Turkey: Union takes legal action against blacklisting of journalists

The Turkish Journalists’ Union (TGS), member of the European Federation of Journalists (IFJ and EFJ), and the Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA) are taking legal action against a think tank over the publication of a report which allegedly blacklisted journalists working for foreign news media. The IFJ and EFJ condemned the targeting of journalists as the latest attempt by the authorities to silence independent journalism and fully support the actions taken by the TGS. The Foundation for Political Economic and Social Research (SETA), a pro-government organisation, published on July 6 a 202-page report entitled “International Media Outlets’ Extensions in…

Meeting with GCA (Turkey)

Meeting with the representatives of Journalists Association from Ankara (Gazeteciler Cemiyeti Ankara, GCA): Nazmi Bilgin, President, and Yusuf Kanli, Vice-President.

Journalists’ organisations on the front line to tackle gender equality and online harassment

Around 30 journalists and journalists’ representatives from 20 European countries attended the workshop on “Increasing gender equality and diversity in the workplace” on 28 and 29 May in Istanbul, Turkey. Co-organised by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the Journalists’ Union of Turkey (TGS), the workshop aimed to provide best practices and concrete tools to improve equality between male and female journalists, improve diversity in the newsroom and counter growing online harrassment. Journalists’ unions and professional associations are best placed to initiate the change when it comes to closing the gender pay gap, improving work-life balance, fighting stereotypes in…

Magazine by young journalists looks into working conditions in Western Balkans & Turkey

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) published on 8 May 2019 a magazine focusing on journalists’ working conditions in the Western Balkans and Turkey. The contributors are six students in journalism from the region, winner of the 2019 Journalism Students Award. The first edition was organised by the journalists’ unions and associations in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BH Journalists), Kosovo (AGK), Montenegro (TUMM), North Macedonia (SSNM), Serbia (SINOS) and Turkey (TGS), in partnership with the EFJ. The objective was to involve the young generation in the debate on working conditions in countries where journalists often face precariousness, insecurity and lack of…