Turkish prosecutor to appeal acquittal of Dutch journalist on terror charges

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) are shocked today by the decision of the chief prosecutor to appeal a court decision made on Monday 13 April to acquit the Dutch journalist Frederike Geerdink for terror charges. Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, EFJ President said, “This is seriously alarming. The judicial system and the level of judicial harassment facing journalists in Turkey show more than ever that more actions must be taken. “We stand together with all human rights organisations and urge both national governments and international institutions to put human right issues in Turkey as…

Belgium: A new platform for freelance journalists launched

How to improve the situation of freelance journalists? “To build a permanent structure”, was the answer of the Association of Professional Journalists of French-speaking Belgium (AJP/AGJPB) On 20 March, the Belgian Association of Journalistes (Francophone group AJP) launched a new platform offering a series of services to freelances, in order to better commercialize their products. It includes a calculator to define how much should be paid by line (page), news on the profession, training, conferences, events etc., a freelances’ repertoire listing freelance journalists with their expertise,  an agenda and a platform of exchange. For further information about the new platform,…

European spectrum policy needs to sustain job growth, media pluralism and quality content

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), together with organisations representing media workers and employers in the creative and cultural industry have called on European policy makers to ensure job growth, media diversity and quality content in the response to the European Commission’s consultation on spectrum policy. In a joint response to the consultation, the Wider Spectrum Group (WSG) in which the EFJ is a member of, told policy makers to develop a strong industry strategy that can sustain job growth, media pluralism and quality content. The group has called on the EU to follow the recommendations made by the Lamy…

Dutch journalist acquitted of terrorist charges in Turkey

Update Frederike Geerdink was acquitted by the court in Diyarbakir, Turkey on 13 April. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the International Federation of Journalist (IFJ) have welcomed the acquittal of Geerdink. #beraat! #acquittal! — Frederike Geerdink (@fgeerdink) April 13, 2015   Dutch journalist to be acquitted of terrorist charges in Turkey (8 April 2015 ) Frederike Geerdink, a Dutch freelance journalist and correspondent based in Turkey could finally clear the terrorism charges  following today’s trial in Diyarbakir, Turkey. Arriving at the High Criminal Court in Diyarbakir this morning with a positive outlook, Geerdink said that she is confident…

Greece needs to reform law and stop criminalising journalists

The International Federation of Journalists and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) today reiterated their call for an urgent reform of Greek defamation law. The call follows the ruling by a court in Athens which sentenced journalist Kostas Vaxevanis to 26 months in jail, suspended for three years, for defamation. “This is a disproportionate sentence against the journalist which is likely to have a chilling effect on independent reporting in Greece,” said Beth Costa, IFJ General Secretary. “There is an urgent need to reform the Greek law on defamation to strike a fairer balance which protects both the rights of…

Attack on TV5 Monde is an attack on media freedom

Three months after the devastating attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, a cyber attack has been launched on 9 April against the French broadcasting network TV5 Monde. According to media reports, TV5 Monde was taken over by individuals claiming to belong to Islamic State, blacking out broadcasts as well as hacking its websites and Facebook page. (Read the full version in French) (Photo: AFP)  

German photojournalist deported from Turkey

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and its affiliates in Germany (Deutscher Journalisten-Verband – DJV and Deutsche Journalistinnen- und Journalisten-Union – dju in ver.di) have today condemned the Turkish authorities for deporting the German photojournalist, Andy Spyra, who was covering the anniversary of the Armenian genocide for Der Spiegel on 29 March. Spyra was stopped and searched by the Turkish authorities on 28 March when he arrived at the Istanbul airport. The authorities accused him of carrying “military-style equipment” and deported him the next day following an overnight detention. He explained in his recent Facebook post that “the military equipment…

EFJ demands Slovenian authorities to drop charges against journalist

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has reiterated its call on Slovenian prosecutors to drop the criminal charges against Anuška Delić, an investigative reporter for Delo, a leading Slovenian daily following a court hearing this morning. During the hearing, Delić defended herself in the court against the accusation of violating Article 260 of the Slovenian Criminal Code on the dissemination of classified information. In 2011, Anuška Delić wrote a series of articles, just before the Slovenian parliamentary elections, in which she uncovered alleged connections between the Slovenian neo-Nazi group “Blood and Honour” and members of the Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS).…

Over 1500 ex-ERT workers to return to jobs

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has today welcomed the submission of a draft law to the Greek Parliament to allow the reopening of the Greek public broadcaster ERT and the hiring of over 1,500 former ERT workers. Among others, the draft law will allow the reopening of all channels TV (NET, ERT3, ERT1) and radio broadcasters, as well as the print magazine Radiotileorasi which is published by ERT. The draft contains provisions that guarantee the return of around 1,550 former ERT employees. The EFJ member (Journalists’ Union of Macedonia and Thrace Daily Newspapers) in Greece has welcomed the new developments…