December 15, 2014

Journalists and Writers Foundation's statement [on recent detentions]

The process of gradually undermining democracy in Turkey has come to a new and accelerated phase. Universal criteria for the press freedom are recklessly breached as pressures mount on the journalists who try to perform their duties to make sure people can have access to information within constitutional boundaries. Although they went to the courthouse and asked inquired prosecutors if there was any investigation concerning them and they were told that there was no legal action concerning them two days ago, the executives of certain media outlets were taken to custody with the intention of intimidating and silencing them and creating the perception that they might flee away. Such a practice is an act of tyranny that would never occur to officials of a truly democratic country.

The Recep Tayyip Erdoğan-led movement is growing increasingly authoritarian and analogous to a one-man regime as it seeks to criminalize and silence everyone that refuses to swear allegiance to it gradually by measuring the public reactions to its moves.

The government has been unable to come up with any conclusive evidence although it has been voicing so many preposterous slanders for one year. The government's policy of conjuring up new and bigger lies to engineer public perceptions is sickening even its own supporters. The fact that it fails to prevent the corruption allegations from being debated despite the huge public resources and media power at its disposal is proof of the ruling party's helplessness in the face of these allegations.

A cursory look at the world's political history reveals that similar incidents occurred for numerous times in other parts of the world. Those who are so obsessed with absolute power that they treat those who advise them to stick to justice and rule of law as traitors are doomed to lose control and start to destroy not only their rivals, but also their allies. This applies to the current situation in Turkey as well.

The ruthless police state attack against one of the best-selling newspapers and one of the most influential TV channels in Turkey and the detention of even TV serial scriptwriters are intended to intimidate all segments of the society.

History is witness that pressures, oppression or despotism fails to silence the proponents of truth, which is currently happening in Turkey. The efforts of the enemies of democracy are futile.

We owe the local and international media outlets, political party leaders, civil society organizations, opinion leaders and all concerned citizens that protest the attempted coup against democracy and the press freedom in today's difficult conditions a debt of gratitude.

To the attention of the public, respectfully.

Published on Journalists and Writers Foundation, 15 December 2014, Monday