October 27, 2015

US embassy expresses concern after seizure of critical media outlets

The US Embassy in Ankara has expressed concern after a board of trustees was appointed to take over the administration of Koza İpek Holding's companies, including two television stations and two newspapers.

“The US believes strongly that freedom of press/expression are universal rights. They are essential for healthy democratic societies,” the embassy said in posts on its Twitter account on Tuesday. Without specifically referring to the seizure of the administration of İpek Koza Holding, it added, “When there is a reduction in the range of viewpoints available to citizens, especially before an election, it is a matter of concern.”

The decision to place media outlets owned by Koza İpek, which happen to be critical of the government, under the administration of a trustee board just days before the Nov. 1 parliamentary election raises questions as to whether the election in Turkey will be free and fair.

Published on Today's Zaman, 27 October 2015, Tuesday