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Twenty TV and Radio Channels Removed from Türksat, the National Satellite Operator

Date of entry 30 Sep 2016 Country Turkey Category E. Other acts having chilling effects on media freedom Source of threat State Submitted by EFJ/IFJ , Article 19 , AEJ , CPJ , Index , IPI , RSF Alert level Level 2
30 Sep 2016 Turkey E. Other acts having chilling effects on media freedom State EFJ/IFJ , Article 19 , AEJ , CPJ , Index , IPI , RSF Level 2

On 28 September 2016, the Turkish national satellite operator Türksat, the only communications satellite operator in Turkey, pulled the signal of twelve TV channels in Turkey - including IMC TV, Hayatın Sesi, Azadi TV, Jiyan TV, Van TV, TV 10, Denge TV and Zarok TV as well as a number of radio channels. An official at the Radio and Television Supreme Council, the state watchdog, confirmed that twenty stations were being closed. This administrative decision of Türksat, which undermines the public’s right to access information, was done on a direct order from the Government, which cited charges of “spreading terrorist propaganda” and “national security” as reasons for this shutdown.

A Court Orders the Blocking and Closure of Information Websites and Users’ Profiles on Twitter

Date of entry 28 Sep 2016 Country Turkey Category E. Other acts having chilling effects on media freedom Source of threat State Submitted by EFJ/IFJ , AEJ , Index Alert level Level 2
28 Sep 2016 Turkey E. Other acts having chilling effects on media freedom State EFJ/IFJ , AEJ , Index Level 2

In a judgment dated from 2 August 2016, the Criminal Court of Gölbaşı (Ankara) ordered the prohibition of access to 33 Internet addresses (17 Twitter accounts, 1 Facebook account and 15 information sites, including profiles and sites managed by journalists) on the grounds of "protecting people’s right to life and safety, the property of others, national security or the maintenance of public order." The court’s judgment considers that the sites in question are "promoting terrorism, violence or are inciting to commit crimes that threaten public order or national security." Contrary to these allegations, several of the sites in question which are managed by professional journalists, according to the European and International Federations of Journalists (EFJ-IFJ), provide essential information about the purges launched following the aborted coup of 15 July and the ongoing violations of media freedom in Turkey.

Russian Investigative Journalist and Activist Grigory Pasko Attacked

Date of entry 28 Sep 2016 Country Russian Federation Category A. Attacks on physical safety and integrity of journalists Source of threat Unknown Submitted by Article 19 , AEJ , CPJ , EFJ/IFJ , Index , IPI Alert level Level 1
28 Sep 2016 Russian Federation A. Attacks on physical safety and integrity of journalists Unknown Article 19 , AEJ , CPJ , EFJ/IFJ , Index , IPI Level 1

At about midday on 27 September 2016, the Director of the Community of Investigative Journalists Grigory Pasko was attacked in the city of Barnaul (Altai region) in Russia by two unknown assailants. He escaped with concussion and a bruise to half of his face. The men shouted, "Get out of our city!" and warned him that they would attack him again. Pasko posted about the attack on Facebook and was referred by police for a medical examination. The previous day, a local newspaper quoted a local nationalist activist calling Pasko a "foreign agent." Unknown people had already been following him and loitering around his hotel. Pasko has previously served time in prison for which he was recognised as a prisoner of conscience by Amnesty International. He was in Barnaul to give a seminar on investigative-reporting techniques.

Azerbaijani Journalist Gasimov Farahim Ilqar Dismissed

Date of entry 27 Sep 2016 Country Azerbaijan Category C. Harassment and intimidation of journalists Source of threat State Submitted by EFJ/IFJ , Article 19 , AEJ , Index , RSF Alert level Level 2
27 Sep 2016 Azerbaijan C. Harassment and intimidation of journalists State EFJ/IFJ , Article 19 , AEJ , Index , RSF Level 2

Azerbaijani journalist Gasimov Farahim Ilqar, working for a private media group, was dismissed from his employment on 12 September 2016 after posting a photo on Facebook showing the success of a rally organized by the National Council of Democratic Forces, an umbrella organisation uniting part of the country’s opposition forces and which had been banned by the government. The demonstrators were protesting in the frame of an upcoming referendum that would give Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev greater powers and a longer term in office. The journalist told the IFJ/EFJ that the day after posting the picture he was fired by Vusala Mahirgizi, head of private media group APA Holding. According to Mahirgizi, the incident had been reported to the Presidential Administration, the executive branch of Aliyev. The journalist said he was fired under pressure from public authorities. Gasimov Farahim Ilqar had worked for APA Holding since 2013.

Extended Pre-Trial Detention of Journalist Zoran Bozinovski

Date of entry 22 Sep 2016 Country "The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" Category B. Detention and imprisonment of journalists Source of threat State Submitted by EFJ/IFJ , RSF Alert level Level 1
22 Sep 2016 "The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" B. Detention and imprisonment of journalists State EFJ/IFJ , RSF Level 1

Macedonian journalist Zoran Bozinovski has been spending five months in detention in Skopje, after his extradiction from Serbia where he had spent another 18 months detained. The prosecutor's office in Skopje needed four months to deliver the formal indictment for alleged espionnage, blackmail and criminal association. The journalists' organisations in the country, the Association of Journalists of Macedonia (ZNM-AJM) and the Trade Union of Macedonian Journalists and Media Workers (SSNM), consider that the case against Bozinovski is not based on material evidence and is politically construed by the Macedonian Government with the intention to silence a journalist who covered many corruption cases in which public officials were involved. AJM and SSNM demand the court to abolish Bozinovski's detention and to drop charges against him.

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