September 2, 2015

Association of European Journalists: Turkish raids on media seem to be politically motivated

The Association of European Journalists on Tuesday harshly criticized police raids on media outlets that are critical of the government in Turkey, saying the current crackdown appears to be politically motivated harassment ahead of snap elections and cannot be acceptable.

In his remarks to Today's Zaman, William Horsley, Media Freedom Representative and vice-president of the association, said Turkey remains bound by its international obligations to protect media freedom and diversity.

“Today's official and police raids on critical media outlets in Turkey look like politically motivated harassment, and an attempt by those in high political authority to misuse the powers of the state for their own advantage only weeks before a general election,” Horsley said. “Such attempts to stifle critical voices and control the media sphere are not acceptable.”

Horsley draw attention to the fact that a large number of abuses; including jailing journalists, censoring the Internet and intimating those who legitimately hold public officials to account, have already taken place recently under the current Turkish government's control.

“These abuses, and all attempts to silence media outlets by official threats and the misuse of anti-terrorism or other laws, must stop immediately,” he added.

Published on Today's Zaman, 1 September 2015, Tuesday