December 14, 2014

Social media critical of police raids at Zaman

Social media exploded with criticism of a police operation that took place at the Zaman daily headquarters in İstanbul on Sunday.

The editor-in-chief of Turkey's Zaman daily was detained on Sunday in a police operation that targeted journalists and TV scriptwriters.

‏“It is not who the government is doing this to, it is what they are doing [that is important],” Turkish Taraf daily columnist Hayko Bağdat wrote on Twitter. He was saying that many observers and reporters who were commentating on the police raids focused on the links between the Hizmet movement and Zaman daily news and Samanyolu TV, rather than concentrating on the actual act of injustice.

Radikal online daily's news director Ömer Erbil also tweeted about the threat to freedom of the press in Turkey that the detention of Zaman's editor-in-chief demonstrated, saying: “Yesterday it was us, today it's you, tomorrow all of us.”

The state of press freedom has faced much pressure under the Justice and Development Party (AK Party). The New York based media watchdog, Freedom House, recently downgraded the country from “partially free” to “not free” in terms of freedom of the press. Several Turkish and foreign media correspondents have been verbally attacked by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and pro-government media.

Published on Sunday's Zaman, 14 December 2014, Sunday