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Professional Associations in reaction to Cumhuriyet indictment: Freedom is killed

Turkish Journalists Union (TGS) Istanbul Branch:

In the delayed indictment about Cumhuriyet newspaper even the editorial policies are made into crime; it is clearly out of solemnity, based on the fact that even our member who is only responsible of delivery is taken under custody. Cumhuriyet newspaper, working with genuine journalism responsibility for people’s right to obtain information, has become a target due to the lawless accusations of the government and the biased judiciary. Our union has been organized within Cumhuriyet since over 50 years, and we want this oppression against Cumhuriyet newspaper to stop. Lawless accusations and actions which aim to annihilate freedom of press and expression should come to an end.

DİSK BASIN-İŞ (Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions of Turkey, Media Union)

We have read the indictment about 11 arrested members of Cumhuriyet newspaper, which was hardly written in 156 days, as the terrifying stage of judiciary in Turkey. The indictment based on imaginary accusations and unfounded aspersions clearly aims to destroy “public serving and truth seeking journalism”. We demand this indictment to be rejected and our arrested colleagues to be released immediately.

Progressive Journalists Association (ÇGD):

The indictment hardly released after five months does not include any qualified accusations against our colleagues, and is a solid document proving that the judicial process against Cumhuriyet is actually a political operation. It clearly shows that the judicial authority is no more acting in the name of the Turkish nation, but for the sake of a specific group.

Press Council:

We see that there is no concrete evidence in the indictment which was released five months after the imprisonment of Cumhuriyet authors and managers. We remind that the imprisonment should be ceased as immediate as possible. The indictment is on, but we understand from legal experts’ comments that there isn’t even one concrete evidence to prove the allegations. Journalists’ ordinary phone calls to their sources are placed as evidence. The long imprisonment of Cumhuriyet newspaper’s members should come to a soon end.

WHatti

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