09 Jul 2018 Lvl. 1
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Alert created on: 02 Nov 2016 Turkey

Pro-Kurdish Media Outlets Shut Down by Decree-Law

Source of threatState
CategoryOther acts having chilling effects on media freedom
Partner EFJ/IFJ Article 19 AEJ CPJ Index IPI
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Partner EFJ/IFJ Article 19 AEJ CPJ Index IPI
On Saturday 29 October 2016, the Turkish government issued two decrees (No 675 and 676) shutting down 15 pro-Kurdish media outlets. 11 newspapers, two news agencies and three magazines are affected:
• Newspapers: Özgür Gündem, Azadiya Welat, Batman Çağdaş , Cizre Postası , Güney Express, İdil Haber, Kızıltepe’nin Sesi, Prestij Haber, Urfanatik and Yüksekova Haber;
• News agencies: Dicle News Agency (DİHA) and Jin News Agency;
• Magazines: Tiroji, Özgürlük Dünyası and arts and culture magazine Evrensel Kültür.
The latest closures bring the number of media outlets shut down in Turkey to 168 under state of emergency, a situation which allows the government to close any media organisation by issuing a cabinet decree.
Updates
09 Jul 2018
On 9 July 2018, the Turkish government issued a decree-law firing 18,632 civil servants due to their alleged ties to “terrorist groups” and closing 12 associations, three newspapers and one TV station. The decree also dismissed 199 academics, some of whom were among the signers of the Academics for Peace initiative, which called on the Turkish government to halt military operations in the country’s southeast. Among the closed newspapers, Özgürlükçü Demokrasi had been seized by the government in March when trustees were appointed to the board. Özgürlükçü Demokrasi, an İstanbul based daily, was the successor of Özgür Gündem, which was closed by a decree in October 2016 over “terrorist propaganda”. Halkın Nabzı, an İstanbul-based daily established in 2013 whose editor-in-chief, İshak Karakaş, had been briefly detained over his protest against a Turkish military offensive in Afrin, northern Syria, was also closed down. Welat, the Diyarbakır-based successor of Azadiya Welat (closed by a decree in October 2016), a Kurdish language daily, was also shuttered by the decree. The assets of the closed associations and media outlets were transferred to the Treasury.
Follow-ups
15 Feb 2017
Human Rights Commissioner : Urgent measures are needed to restore freedom of expression in Turkey
31 Oct 2016
Statement from Secretary General Jagland expressing his concern about state of emergency measures and freedom of expression in Turkey
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