Turkey

Turkey world's worst jailer of journalists

In a crackdown unprecedented since CPJ began keeping records in 1991, Turkey jails more journalists than any other country in 2016 and closes some 178 news outlets and publishing houses by decree in the space of five months, allowing only a handful to reopen. Using emergency powers, the government vastly expands its latitude to close media organizations on broad, ill-defined grounds, to censor the internet, and to investigate internet users without court orders.

Crackdown Chronicle: Week of March 19
Turkey jails record number of journalists
Video: Turkey is jail for journalists
Reuters

Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of March 26, 2017

Abdullah Kılıç, courtesy of the Kılıç family

Trial for 29 journalists begins
The trial of 29 journalists and media workers, including Abdullah Kılıç, began in Istanbul today. Hearings were still in session at the time of publication.

March 27, 2017 10:23 AM ET

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Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of March 19, 2017

A demonstrator walks around a bonfire to mark the spring festival of Newroz in the southeastern Turkish city of Diyarbakır, March 21, 2016. Ethnic Kurds marked the occasion last year with a demonstration calling for the resumption of peace talks with the government. (Reuters/Sertac Kayar)

Security forces detain reporter in southeastern Turkey
Security forces in the southeastern province of Mardin today detained Dihaber reporter Murat Verim, the news agency reported. Dihaber said the arrest was part of an ongoing terrorism investigation.

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Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of March 12

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addresses local government officials in Ankara, January 19, 2017. (Yasin Bulbul/Presidential Press Service/Pool via AP)

Editor sentenced to nine years in prison
The 7th Court for Serious Crimes in the southeastern Turkish city of Diyarbakır yesterday sentenced Aydın Atar, former news editor for the shuttered Kurdish-language daily newspaper Azadiya Welat, to nine years, four months, and 15 days in prison on charges of "propagandizing for a [terrorist] organization," the news website Dihaber reported. The journalist is free, pending appeal.

Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of March 5

Protesters in Berlin call for the release of Die Welt Turkey correspondent Deniz Yücel, February 28, 2017. (Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch)

Suspended sentences, fines, for participants in newspaper solidarity campaign
Istanbul's 22nd Court for Serious Crimes today convicted four people of terrorism charges in connection with the coverage of the pro-Kurdish daily newspaper Özgür Gündem on the days on which they each symbolically acted as co-editor of the newspaper to protest authorities' relentless judicial harassment of the newspaper, according to news reports. Police raided and sealed the newspaper's office in August 2016, as dozens of writers, activists, academics, and artists continued to show solidarity with the newspaper by symbolically adding their names to the newspaper's masthead for a day.

Statements   |   Turkey

Die Welt Turkey correspondent jailed pending trial

Demonstrators in Berlin protest Turkey's jailing of Die Welt correspondent Deniz Yücel, February 28, 2017. (Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch)

New York, February 28, 2017--Turkish prosecutors should immediately and unconditionally drop all charges against Deniz Yücel, Turkey correspondent for the German newspaper Die Welt, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Istanbul's Ninth Court of Penal Peace last night ordered the journalist, a dual citizen of Turkey and Germany detained since February 14, jailed pending trial on charges of "propagandizing for a [terrorist] organization" and "provoking the people to hatred and animosity," based on his journalism for Die Welt, according to German and Turkish press reports.

February 28, 2017 12:46 PM ET

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Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of February 26

"Free Deniz" is written across the Berlin headquarters of publisher Axel Springer Markus Schreiber, February 28, 2017. (AP/Markus Schreiber)

Shots fired at newspaper office, no one injured
An unknown assailant in a moving taxi fired two shots from a handgun at the building housing the daily newspaper Cumhuriyet in Istanbul this morning, Cumhuriyet reported. A police investigation is in progress, the report said.

Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of February 19

A float depicting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stands ready for the upcoming Rose Monday carnival parade in Mainz, Germany, February 21, 2017. The signs say 'democracy' and 'freedom of speech.' (Reuters/Ralph Orlowski)

Detention of Die Welt Turkey correspondent complicates relations with Germany
The detention of Deniz Yücel, Turkey correspondent for the German newspaper Die Welt, has complicated relations with German officials, the socialist daily Evrensel, the German news website Handelsbatt Global, and the pro-Turkish-government Daily Sabah reported. According to a February 21 Handelsbatt Global report, German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke with Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım about the German-Turkish dual citizen's case at the Munich Security Conference over the past weekend.

Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of February 12

A court on February 14, 2017, handed columnist Hasan Cemal, seen here at a colleague's funeral in Istanbul on October 30, 2015, a suspended sentence of one year and three months in prison on charges of propagandizing for a terrorist group in one of his columns.

Publisher closes magazine for cartoon lampooning Moses
The publisher of the cartoon magazine GırGır announced today that he was closing down the magazine after its publication of a cartoon depicting Moses irritating his followers wandering in the desert by talking too much and bragging about parting the Red Sea sparked outrage on social media, including from the president's office, news website T24 reported.

Blog   |   Turkey

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of February 5

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan chairs a meeting of the National Security Council in Ankara, January 31, 2017. (Kayhan Ozer/Presidential Press Service/Pool via AP)

German court upholds partial ban on poem satirizing Erdoğan
A court in the German city of Hamburg today upheld a previous court's ban on comedian Jan Böhmermann's reciting 18 of 24 verses of a poem satirizing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan that the comedian recited on television last year, according to press reports. Erdoğan pressed insult charges against the comedian.

[February 10, 2017]

Letters   |   Germany, Turkey

CPJ asks German Chancellor Merkel to raise press freedom on Turkey visit

Ahead of her visit to Turkey, the Committee to Protect Journalists requests German Chancellor Angela Merkel to ask Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to free the dozens of journalists imprisoned in the country and to urge him to allow the more than 100 media outlets closed since failed July 2016 military coup to reopen and to operate without harassment.

January 30, 2017 1:31 PM ET

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