Dutch journalist tried in Turkey for alleged terrorism charges

Frederike Geerdink, freelance journalist and correspondent in Turkey, is to appear before the court in Diyarbakir, Turkey on Wednesday 8 April. Early January, Geerdink was arrested and held for a short time. According to the authorities in Turkey, Geerdink is accused of spreading propaganda for the banned Kurdistan Workers’ Party in Turkey. The Dutch Association of Journalists (NVJ), the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemned the arrest and prosecution of Geerdink saying that the charge against Geerdink is in violation of international law and treaties ratified by the Turkish government on freedom of…

Can Europe do something for freelances? EFJ meets MEP Steinruck

On 31st March, EFJ Director Renate Schroeder together with Freelance Expert Group member Michael Hirschler from the German affiliate DJV met with Member of the European Parliament Jutta Steinruck for a very engaged one hour discussion. Steinruck is member of the Committee for Employment and Social Affairs  and trade union co-ordinator of the S&D Group. Main theme of the talk were the urgent problems journalists’ and other unions face throughout Europe: There are grave loopholes when it comes to social security for freelances; no real negotiation mandates for unions on behalf of freelances, in some Member States freelances cannot  become…

Draft EU trade secrets law threatens press freedom

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has joined a group of civil society organisations – Corporate Europe Observatory – across Europe opposing the hasty push by the European Commission for a new European Union (EU) Directive on Trade Secrets. Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, the EFJ President said, “The draft directive poses some serious threats to the work of journalists and trade union representatives.” The European Commission draft does not provide a clear exemption for journalists and whistleblowers who publish or reveal information that is in the public interests. Journalists and whistleblowers must show that “…the alleged acquisition, use or disclosure of…

CoE launches online platform on journalists’ safety and media violations

Following months of preparation and the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on 4 December 2014 with the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and other media partners, the Council of Europe (CoE) has officially launched today an online platform to promote the protection of journalism and safety of journalists. The platform aims to improve the protection of journalists, better address threats and violence against media professionals and foster early warning mechanisms and response capacity within the Council of Europe. Whenever there is a physical attack on journalists or legal threat to media freedom, such violations…

Crimean Tatar TV shut down

Update Following our report (below) this morning at 11.24am, it is annouced at 3.30pm today that the ATR TV is shutting down because the Russian telecommunications regulator refused to grant a licence to the TV station. #Crimean Tatar TV channel goes silent http://t.co/Y1WY4y52QB pic.twitter.com/uNcV2Qs03H — Kyiv Post (@KyivPost) April 1, 2015 The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has today condemned the threat of closure facing the Simferopol-based ATR TV station in Crimea.  The operation of ATR and other broadcasters (including children’s entertainment Lale and Meydan FM station) would become illegal imminently if the Russian telecommunications regulator (Roskomnadzor) refuses to grant…

MEPs call for action to ensure media pluralism in Europe

In a conference organised by the European Parliament on “Monitoring media freedom and pluralism in Europe”, Members of the European Parliaments (MEPs) called for actions to be taken by member states and European institutions to guarantee media freedom and pluralism. The conference hosted by MEP Silvia Costa (Chair of Culture and Education Committee) and MEP Claude Moraes (Chairs of Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee) debated with stakeholders, including representative of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), Renate Schroeder. In particular, MEPs have highlighted the Media Pluralism Monitoring tool as a way to trigger further action among member states…