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Human Rights Watch’s Report Shows the Severity of Human Rights Violations in Turkey

On January 18, 2018, the Human Rights Watch (“HRW”) published a report reviewing the human rights practices around the world in 2017. The report titled “World Report 2018: Events of 2017” examined more than 90 countries including Turkey. In parts relevant to Turkey, the HRW scrutinized a wide range of topics such as the state of emergency measures, freedom of expression, association and assembly, torture and ill-treatment in custody as well as refugees’ situation.

The report firstly referred to the April 2017 referendum which introduced a new presidential system lacking satisfactory system of checks and balances. It highlighted the fact that the referendum was carried out under the state of emergency in an environment of heavy media censorship. The HRW’s points about the new presidential system indeed indicate that the separation of powers is at risk in Turkey whereas it is one of the most significant components of democracy.

The state of emergency measures also attract attention. The president can adopt decree laws without parliamentary oversight or the possibility of judicial review according to Turkish legislation. As reported by the HRW, these decree laws include many controversial measures incompatible with Turkey’s responsibilities under the international human rights law. More than 110,000 people were dismissed or suspended from their public positions with no explanation but only their names on lists published via decree laws. The government shut down plenty of institutions including media outlets, businesses, schools and universities, hospitals and non-governmental organizations such as associations and foundations. What is worse, there is still no effective authority for all these real and legal persons to apply for a review. People had little hope when the “State of Emergency Procedures Investigation Commission” was introduced to investigate measures taken under the state of emergency. Nevertheless, as stated by the HRW, independence of the Commission is doubtful since all of its members are appointed with the government’s approval. Further appeal is possible on the paper, but it is likely to take too much time because of the high influx of applications and applicants have nothing else but wait about their right to work in public service to be taken away, bank accounts to be frozen and passports to be canceled.

Many people including teachers, public servants such as police officers and military personnel, journalists and politicians were either arrested or detained under the state of emergency as well. The striking point is that most were imprisoned with no compelling evidence of any criminal activity, but only because of their alleged links with the Hizmet Movement inspired by an Islamic scholar Fethullah Gulen who has been blamed by the government to mastermind the coup attempt. It is crucial to note here that the Movement has been strongly denying any involvement and Mr. Gulen has called for an international investigation on the issue.

Freedom of expression, association and assembly were also violated considerably by the Turkish government. To clarify, the government has blocked many websites and banned a huge amount of content, and all types of peaceful public protests were banned by the government as well as were violently dispersed. Unsurprisingly, Turkey is the leading country in the number of jailed journalists whose trials and case files are again insufficient. The documents used as an evidence against arrested journalists are mostly writing and reporting which do not promote any type of violence. As there is always a prominent risk of imprisonment and censorship, other journalists and media agencies cannot publish anything critical but only pro-government ideas. In March, 21 journalists who were arrested because of their connections with the Hizmet Movement, were released by the court. Their families went to the prison facilities to bring them back to their homes but could not. After huge criticisms by pro-government media, an appeal was lodged against eight of them and a new investigation was started against the rest. Therefore, eventually, none of them were released. In addition, judges and a prosecutor who was at this trial were suspended by the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors. Many of the journalists from the newspaper Zaman, claimed to be supporting the Movement, have been on trial due to writings without a reference to any type of violence and they face life imprisonment.

Not only individuals related to the Hizmet Movement but also leftist and Kurdish people were targeted by the government. According to the HRW’s report, 19 journalists from the newspaper Cumhuriyet were jailed as well. In one of the cases concerning Cumhuriyet, Enis Berberoglu was sentenced to 25 years of imprisonment who is a parliamentarian from the main opposition party, Republican People’s Party (CHP). The court of appeal has overturned his conviction, yet he is not released as well as not expected to be released as the government still wants him behind bars. Similarly, plenty of journalists were arrested from the newspaper Ozgur Gundem which was shut down by the government.

Lawyers and human rights defenders received their own shares from the Turkish government’s oppression. Around 500 lawyers have been arrested and 1000 are yet on trial, mostly because of supporting the Hizmet Movement. Chair of Amnesty International, Taner Kilic, has been in prolonged detention with “politically motivated and unsubstantiated charges” as said by the HRW.

The HRW also explored the detention conditions during police custody and concluded that many instances of torture and ill-treatment were witnessed. There have been many cases reported where police officers beat detainees, left them in physically stressed positions and threatened them to rape. Enforced disappearances, scaring defense lawyers and interfering with medical examinations also took place in the country.

Regarding the ongoing conflict in the southeast region, the government could not yet make a progress. Party co-leaders and parliamentarians of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) were sent to prison. Additionally, 89 mayors were dismissed by the government as specified by the report. The government has clearly violated freedom of expression and rights to political association, participation, and representation.

The report highlighted the refugee crisis as well which indeed concerns the whole world. The conditions in which refugees live (mostly Syrian but also from other countries) are not compatible with international standards.

All these were expressed in various occasions by international actors. The United Nations, the European Union, the Council of Europe, the United States State Department and many other foreign governments have called the Turkish government to end this human rights disaster going on in the country as was stated by the Human Rights Watch’s report.


Download as a PDF File: AST_1-22-2018_HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH’S REPORT SHOWS THE SEVERITY OF HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS IN TURKEY_P7

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Turkish Media Worker Zafer Özsoy Faces 3 Life Sentences With No Evidence

A Turkish media worker, who has been behind bars for 478 days, faces three consecutive life sentences and additional 15 years in jail on fabricated terrorism and coup plotting charges.

Zafer Özsoy, 44-year-old media professional who specializes in broadcasting network and satellite uplink services, is charged under Turkey’s abusive anti-terror laws when his company FİA was found to have provided infrastructure services to critical media outlets.

The company does not get involved in editorial policies of the clients that it provided services yet he stands accused of attempting to overthrow the constitutional order, the Turkish government and the Turkish Parliament without any evidence to back up any of the charges.

Özsoy started his media career at Cihan News Agency in 1995 right after he graduated from İstanbul University’s Radio and Television department. He had worked almost for 20 years at the same company’s various departments. Thanks to his experience and extensive network of contacts, he became one of the best media professional in his field of expertise.

Starting in 2014, Erdoğan’s government intensified pressure on Cihan news agency and its clients, forcing the company to downsize a year later to survive by shedding some of its assets and laying off workers.

Özsoy and his colleagues who worked together for years decided to establish their own production company FİA that would serve live streaming, broadcasting and digital video content for businesses. FİA purchased some of the technical equipment from the Cihan news agency under a deal that included negotiated fee for severance and compensation payments.

However, on March 7, 2016, Turkish government unlawfully seized both the Cihan news agency and FİA as part of the escalating crackdown on critical media outlets in Turkey. Özsoy and his partners were the first ones who were fired by the government appointed trustees who took over the management of these companies.

After working 20 years in media industry, Özsoy’s dream to run his own company with a selected team of his own was over but the worst was yet to come.

He was detained on July 27, 2016 at his home in İstanbul following detention warrants were issued for 47 journalists on dubious charges. He was formally arrested on August 4, 2016 over alleged links to FETÖ, a hoax terror organisation that was fabricated by the regime of autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to defame the civic Gülen movement. He was sent to notorious Silivri Prison pending trial.

During the interrogation, Özsoy was asked why he continued to work for “Zaman Newspaper” when Turkey’s biggest corruption investigations incriminating cabinet ministers and President Erdoğan’s family members were made public at the end of 2013. Erdoğan, then prime minister, presented graft probes as a coup attempt against his government and accused critical media outlets, which covered the graft scandal, of being traitors and coup plotters against his government. Özsoy told his interrogators that he has never worked in Zaman newspaper.

The police even asked Özsoy whether he made any contribution to a piece written by Today’s Zaman former editor-in-chief Bülent Keneş who forewarned that a coup would be terrible for Turkey’s future, in an article Keneş wrote on July 8, 2016. Özsoy replied “I heard about the article for the first time here.” Keneş has also been indicted over absurd terrorism charges in several cases and remain at large. Ironically, this question was asked to all suspects who were detained along with Özsoy on July 27, 2016.

Özsoy appeared before judges for the first time in 14 months after he was arrested on September 18, 2017. The most difficult moment of the hearing was that he had to defend himself against the indictment that included no direct accusation on him. The public prosecutor mentioned his name twice in 64-page indictment. The first citation of him is recorded among the list of defendants in the first part of the indictment. The second and the last was in the list of suspects for whom the prosecutor demanded severe punishment for him. The prosecutor did not bother to present any evidence against the suspect whom he asked for sentencing that amounted to three life sentences and additional 15 years in prison.

As expected the court ruled for the continuation of his arrest pending next hearing which will be held on December 8, 2017.

Özsoy who is married with two children and known for his Formula-1 passion is looking forward to being free one day and reuniting with his loved ones.

Turkey is the biggest jailer of journalists in the world. The most recent figures documented by the SCF has showed that 256 journalists and media workers are in jails as of November 21, 2017, most in pre-trial detention languishing in notorious Turkish prisons without even a conviction. Of those in Turkish prisons, 230 are arrested pending trial, only 26 journalists remain convicted and serving time in Turkish prisons. An outstanding detention warrants remain for 135 journalists who live in exile or remain at large in Turkey.

Detaining tens of thousands of people over alleged links to the Gülen movement, the government also closed down more than 180 media outlets after the controversial coup attempt.

Turkey survived a controversial military coup attempt on July 15, 2016 that killed 249 people. Immediately after the putsch, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government along with President Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement.

Gülen, who inspired the movement, strongly denied having any role in the failed coup and called for an international investigation into it, but President Erdoğan — calling the coup attempt “a gift from God” — and the government initiated a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.

Turkey has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants since July 15. Turkey’s Justice Ministry announced on July 13 that 50,510 people have been arrested and 169,013 have been the subject of legal proceedings on coup charges since the failed coup.

Souce: https://stockholmcf.org/turkish-media-worker-zafer-ozsoy-faces-3-life-sentences-with-no-evidence/

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Freedom of the Net 2017

FREEDOM OF THE NET 2017 REPORT PREPARED BY THE FREEDOM HOUSE

SUMMARY OF THE PARTS CONCERNING TURKEY

In November 2017, the Freedom House[1] published a report titled Freedom of the Net 2017[2] which assesses the internet freedom around the world making country-based evaluations.

According to the Report, Turkey falls into the category of “Not Free” in 2017. Together with Egypt and Ukraine, Turkey is in the top three countries who declined most compared to the last year. Turkey and Russia are both ranked as 15th among 65 countries falling behind countries such as Myanmar, Sudan and Venezuela.[3] The Report refers to different applications in Turkey many times showing that the State has been taking considerably restrictive measures.

Especially in 2017 thousands of people were arrested and/or taken into custody for downloading a mobile communication app called ByLock reasoning that coup plotters allegedly used the same app as well. The Report highlights that the app was easily accessible as well as publicly available in different app stores.

According to the Freedom House, the Turkish government has not only been using the internet to accuse government critics of serious crimes, but also to manipulate public discussions and control particular agendas. As per the allegations, around 6,000 people were employed to achieve these aims. To illustrate, many dissident journalists and academics have been dealing with online harassment by pro-government troll accounts through social media websites. Disinformation methods used by the State vary including paying government commentators (without explicit sponsorship), maintaining pro-government media and propaganda, hijacking politically dissent websites (such as social media accounts and news sites), and lastly creating fake news around elections intentionally to affect voters.

Besides these direct methods, the Turkish government uses indirect restrictions as well to control the use of the internet. To exemplify, WhatsApp as the most common mobile communication app was throttled many times especially right after significant political events and became almost inaccessible. Moreover, Turkey has taken measures to limit and control VPNs channels which enable internet users to reach banned websites and content. For example, Tor which is one of the most secure VPNs has been targeted by repressive governments. The Report emphasizes that Turkey has also applied new blocking orders to limit the use of Tor network making it harder for users to reach.

The Report specifies topics and content censored by the Turkish government; some of which can be listed as criticisms of authorities, corruption, conflict, political opposition, satire as well as mobilization for public causes. Out of 9 types of key internet controls categorized by the Freedom House, Turkey has been applying 7 of them including blocking of online communication tools, network shutdowns, increasing censorship through new laws, arrest and imprisonment of opposing internet users.

To sum up, the Freedom of the Net 2017 report illustrates how Turkey has been using the internet to serve the government’s own interests and also to limit individual freedoms such as freedom of expression and right to privacy.

1- Freedom House is a US based non-governmental organization “dedicated to the expansion of freedom and democracy around the world.”; “About Us.” Freedom House, freedomhouse.org/about-us.

2-Freedom House, Freedom of the Net 2017, Nov 2017, available at: https://freedomhouse.org/sites/default/files/FOTN_2017_Final.pdf

3- It must be noted that these 65 countries represent 87% of the world’s internet users.

 


Download PDF File: Freedom of the Net 2017

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AST Turkey’s Human Rights Violations Weekly Nov. 20

Download as pdf: AST_Turkey’s Human Rights Violations Weekly_Nov20

Turkey’s Human Rights Violations | 11/13/2017-11/20/2017

1-” Mother of baby with congenital heart defect arrested on coup charges”
https://turkeypurge.com/mother-baby-congenital-heart-defect-arrested-coup-charges

2-“Turkish PM: We didn’t ask US gov’t for evidence of Sept. 11, why do you ask for it when it comes to July 15 coup attempt?”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkish-pm-didnt-ask-us-govt-evidence-sept-11-ask-comes-july-15-coup-attempt

3-“Turkish lieutenant colonel recants testimony, says drugged and tortured”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkish-lieutenant-colonel-recants-testimony-says-drugged-tortured

4-“15-year-old girl to be removed from foster family over Gülen links”
https://turkeypurge.com/15-year-old-girl-removed-foster-family-gulen-links

5-“Head of Progressive Lawyers’ Association arrested on terror charges”
https://turkeypurge.com/head-progressive-lawyers-association-arrested-terror-charges

6-“Court denies request to release 6 journalists including Altan brothers, Ilıcak”
https://turkeypurge.com/court-denies-request-release-6-journalists-including-altan-brothers-ilicak

7-“10 detained over social media posts in Ankara”
https://turkeypurge.com/10-detained-social-media-posts-ankara

8-“Turkish Gov’t Imprisons 6 Female Lawyers Over Alleged Links To Gülen Movement”
https://stockholmcf.org/turkish-govt-imprisons-6-female-lawyers-over-alleged-links-to-gulen-movement/

9-“UN Experts Call For Dropping Of Terror Charges Against Leading Human Rights Defenders”
https://stockholmcf.org/un-experts-call-for-dropping-of-terror-charges-against-leading-human-rights-defenders/

10-“Jailed Turkish-German Journalist Yücel: Isolation Is Torture”
https://stockholmcf.org/jailed-turkish-german-journalist-yucel-isolation-is-torture/

11-“Female Detainees Exposed To Severe Ill-Treatment In Turkey’s Jail”
https://stockholmcf.org/female-detainees-exposed-to-severe-ill-treatment-in-turkeys-jail/

12-” Freedom House: Turkish Gov’t Detains Tens Of Thousands Arbitrarily Over Alleged Use Of ByLock”
https://stockholmcf.org/freedom-house-turkish-govt-detains-tens-of-thousands-arbitrarily-over-alleged-use-of-bylock/

13-“Ankara governor bans all gay festivals, forums, exhibitions on security grounds: report”
https://turkeypurge.com/ankara-governor-bans-gay-festivals-forums-exhibitions-security-grounds-report

14-“Turkey jails 36 on-duty officers, soldiers on coup charges”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkey-jails-36-duty-officers-soldiers-coup-charges

15-“60-year-old ‘Gülenist’ farmer put in pre-trial detention on coup charges”
https://turkeypurge.com/60-year-old-gulenist-villager-put-pre-trial-detention-coup-charges

16-“Heart attack strikes Kırklareli electrician jailed on coup charges — claim”
https://turkeypurge.com/heart-attack-strikes-kirklareli-electrician-jailed-coup-charges-claim

17-“Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code banned in Turkish prison due to emergency rule”
https://turkeypurge.com/dan-browns-da-vinci-code-banned-turkish-prison-due-emergency-rule

18-“Imprisoned journalist loses 30 kg amid kidney disease as family asks for help”
https://turkeypurge.com/imprisoned-journalist-loses-30-kg-amid-kidney-disease-family-asks-help

19-“Wives of another 3 police chiefs who led 2013 corruption operations detained”
https://turkeypurge.com/wives-another-3-police-chiefs-led-2013-corruption-operations-detained

20-“Detention warrants issued for 45 over ByLock use”
https://turkeypurge.com/detention-warrants-issued-45-bylock-use

21-“Turkey closes 5 more schools in post-coup crackdown”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkey-closes-5-schools-post-coup-crackdown

22-” Seriously Ill 81-Year-Old Turkish Man Ordered To Remain In Prison On Coup Charges”
https://stockholmcf.org/seriously-ill-81-year-old-turkish-man-ordered-to-remain-in-prison-on-coup-charges/

23-“Turkish court rules for ‘bankruptcy’ of Gülen-linked Bank Asya”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkish-court-rules-bankruptcy-gulen-linked-bank-asya

24-“Turkish police raid university, detain 42 academics, staff on coup charges”
https://turkeypurge.com/turkish-police-raid-university-detain-42-academics-staff-coup-charges

25-” Elderly villager detained for questioning gov’t coup narrative”
https://www.turkishminute.com/2017/11/17/elderly-villager-detained-for-questioning-govt-coup-narrative/

26-“Minister says 48,739 people jailed over Gülen links so far”
https://turkeypurge.com/minister-says-48973-people-arrested-gulen-links-far

27-“Thousands arbitrarily detained over ByLock use, Wikipedia blocked: Freedom House
https://turkeypurge.com/thousands-arbitrarily-detained-bylock-use-wikipedia-blocked-freedom-house

28-“Academics, journalists who signed Peace Declaration do not deserve to live: ruling party deputy”
https://turkeypurge.com/academics-journalists-signed-peace-declaration-not-deserve-live-ruling-party-deputy

29-“Turkish government sentences two kurdish journalists to ten months in prison”
https://stockholmcf.org/turkish-govt-sentences-two-kurdish-journalists-to-ten-months-in-prison/

30-” Germany In Communication With Interpol To Protect Refugees From Turkey”
https://stockholmcf.org/germany-in-communication-with-interpol-to-protect-refugees-from-turkey/

31-” 666 detained in one week over Gülen links”
https://www.turkishminute.com/2017/11/20/666-detained-in-one-week-over-gulen-links/

32-” Amnesty International launches campaign protesting trial of activists on ‘trumped-up “terrorism” charges’”
https://www.turkishminute.com/2017/11/17/ai-launches-campaign-protesting-trial-of-activists-on-trumped-up-terrorism-charges/

Türkiye tarafından işlenenen İnsan Hakları İhlalleri | 11/13/2017-11/20/2017

1-“Fişleme’den 33 ay tutuklu kaldı, beraat etti!”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/fislemeden-33-ay-tutuklu-kaldi-beraat-etti-h107440.html

2-“Elazığ’da kadın koğuşuna tazyikli suyla baskın!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/elazigda-kadin-kogusuna-tazyikli-suyla-baskin-h107437.html

3-“Freedom House: Amaç Gülenistlerin üzerine çökmek”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/freedom-house-amac-gulenistlerin-uzerine-cokmek-h107399.html

4-“Anayasa Mahkemesi süresiz OHAL tatiline girdi”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/anayasa-mahkemesi-suresiz-ohal-tatiline-girdi-h107398.html

5-“Cezaevinden gelen bu bebek kıyafetine iyi bakın”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/cezaevinden-gelen-bu-bebek-kiyafetine-iyi-bakin-h107390.html

6=”Türkiye, özgürlüklerin kısıtlandığı ülkeler arasında!”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/turkiye-ozgurluklerin-kisitlandigi-ulkeler-arasinda-h107432.html

7-“Tutukluluğa devam kararı çıktı…Ahmet Altan: böyle hukuk olmaz, böyle mahkeme olmaz. Sözlerim bu kadar”
http://www.tr724.com/hakim-cildirdi-altan-kardesler-ilicakin-avukatlarini-salondan-atti/

8-“‘Red gerekçesi’: ‘Cinsel şiddet, İşkence, yargısız infaz’ ifadeleri kaba!”
http://www.kronos.news/tr/red-gerekcesi-cinsel-siddet-iskence-yargisiz-infaz-ifadeleri-kaba/

9-” BM’den Türkiye’ye ‘insan hakları’ eleştirisi: Hükümet kanıt sunmuyor”
http://t24.com.tr/haber/bmden-turkiyeye-insan-haklari-elestirisi-hukumet-kanit-sunmuyor,489348

10-“Eşi 15 aydır tutuklu 3 çocuk annesi kalp krizi geçirdi”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/esi-15-aydir-tutuklu-3-cocuk-annesi-kalp-krizi-gecirdi-h107662.html

11-“Tutuklu gazeteci cezaevinde 30 kilo verdi, hayati tehlikesi var”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/tutuklu-gazeteci-cezaevinde-30-kilo-verdi-hayati-tehlikesi-var-h107640.html

12-“Diyarbakır Barosu’nun Elazığ Cezaevi işkence raporu”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/diyarbakir-barosunun-elazig-cezaevi-iskence-raporu-h107604.html

13-“OHAL nedeniyle hapishanelerde sistematik işkenceler zirve yaptı..”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/ohal-nedeniyle-hapishanelerde-sistematik-iskenceler-zirve-yapti-h107538.html

14-“Bartın KOM Şube Müdürlüğünde gözaltında sistematik işkence..”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/bartin-kom-sube-mudurlugunde-gozaltinda-sistematik-iskence-h107530.html

15-“Kolu kırılan tutuklu avukat, tedavi edilmiyor!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/kolu-kirilan-tutuklu-avukat-tedavi-edilmiyor-h107506.html

16-“Türkiye’deki OHAL zulmü bu sergide!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/turkiyedeki-ohal-zulmu-bu-sergide-h107500.html

17-“Tutuklu 668 bebeği büyük maçta duyurdular!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/tutuklu-668-bebegi-buyuk-macta-duyurdular-h107498.html

18-“81 yaşındaki tutuklu Mustafa Amcanın eşi konuştu: Bizi Bülent Arınç’a sorsunlar!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/81-yasindaki-tutuklu-mustafa-amcanin-esi-konustu-bizi-bulent-arinca-sorsunlar-h107497.html

19-“Baba 14 aydır tutuklu bu sabah anneyi aldılar”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/baba-14-aydir-tutuklu-bu-sabah-anneyi-aldilar-h107458.html

20-“Elazığ’da kadın koğuşuna tazyikli suyla baskın!”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/elazigda-kadin-kogusuna-tazyikli-suyla-baskin-h107437.html

21-“Türkiye’de zulme uğrayan hizmet hareketi mensuplarına Norveç’ten koruma”
http://aktifhaber.com/dunya/turkiyede-zulme-ugrayan-hizmet-hareketi-mensuplarina-norvecten-koruma-h107649.html

22-“‘Hocaefendi’ye FETÖ deme’diye uyardı, gözaltına alındı”
http://www.tr724.com/hocaefendiye-feto-deme-diye-uyardi-gozaltina-alindi/

23-“Atatürk ve Erdoğan’a hakaretle suçlanan işçiye altı yıl hapis”
http://www.diken.com.tr/ataturk-ve-erdogana-hakaretle-suclanan-isciye-alti-yil-hapis/

24-“Emniyet, 661 ‘FETÖ’ sanığına 34 milyon liralık tazminat davası açtı”
http://www.diken.com.tr/emniyet-661-feto-sanigina-34-milyon-liralik-tazminat-davasi-acti/

25-” 668 Bebek için Afrika’da eylem
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/668-bebek-icin-afrikada-eylem-h107768.html

26-” Mengü’den kitlesel kırım eleştirisi: Bir sürü gencecik öğretmen kızları F..’cü diye içeri alındı”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/menguden-kitlesel-kirim-elestirisi-bir-suru-gencecik-ogretmen-kizlari-fcu-diye-iceri-alindi-h107754.html

27-” Öğretmenlere operasyon: 107 gözaltı kararı”
http://aktifhaber.com/genel/ogretmenlere-operasyon-107-gozalti-karari-h107750.html

28-” OHAL’de 1020 şirket TMSF yönetimine geçti”
http://aktifhaber.com/ekonomi/ohalde-1020-sirket-tmsf-yonetimine-gecti-h107745.html

29-” Konya’daki cadı avından yargılanan polislere hapis cezaları”
http://aktifhaber.com/gundem/konyadaki-cadi-avindan-yargilanan-polislere-hapis-cezalari-h107740.html

30-” Hapisteki çocuklara OHAL döneminde işkence ve kötü muamele arttı”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/hapisteki-cocuklara-ohal-doneminde-iskence-ve-kotu-muamele-artti-h107721.html

31-“Gece gündüz dayak yemenin ne demek olduğunu bilir misin?”
http://aktifhaber.com/iskence/gece-gunduz-dayak-yemenin-ne-demek-oldugunu-bilir-misin-h107736.html

32-“Hapisteki çocuklar şiddetten şikayetçi
http://www.diken.com.tr/hapisteki-cocuklar-siddetten-sikayetci/

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Deterioration of the Internet Freedom

 

Freedom of the Net 2017 Report Prepared by the Freedom House: Summary of the Parts Concerning Turkey

In November 2017, the Freedom House published a report titled Freedom of the Net 2017 which assesses the internet freedom around the world making country-based evaluations.

According to the Report, Turkey falls into the category of “Not Free” in 2017. Together with Egypt and Ukraine, Turkey is in the top three countries who declined most compared to the last year. Turkey and Russia are both ranked as 15th among 65 countries falling behind countries such as Myanmar, Sudan and Venezuela. The Report refers to different applications in Turkey many times showing that the State has been taking considerably restrictive measures.

Especially in 2017 thousands of people were arrested and/or taken into custody for downloading a mobile communication app called ByLock reasoning that coup plotters allegedly used the same app as well. The Report highlights that the app was easily accessible as well as publicly available in different app stores.

According to the Freedom House, the Turkish government has not only been using the internet to accuse government critics of serious crimes, but also to manipulate public discussions and control particular agendas. As per the allegations, around 6,000 people were employed to achieve these aims. To illustrate, many dissident journalists and academics have been dealing with online harassment by pro-government troll accounts through social media websites. Disinformation methods used by the State vary including paying government commentators (without explicit sponsorship), maintaining pro-government media and propaganda, hijacking politically dissent websites (such as social media accounts and news sites), and lastly creating fake news around elections intentionally to affect voters.

Besides these direct methods, the Turkish government uses indirect restrictions as well to control the use of the internet. To exemplify, WhatsApp as the most common mobile communication app was throttled many times especially right after significant political events and became almost inaccessible. Moreover, Turkey has taken measures to limit and control VPNs channels which enable internet users to reach banned websites and content. For example, Tor which is one of the most secure VPNs has been targeted by repressive governments. The Report emphasizes that Turkey has also applied new blocking orders to limit the use of Tor network making it harder for users to reach.

The Report specifies topics and content censored by the Turkish government; some of which can be listed as criticisms of authorities, corruption, conflict, political opposition, satire as well as mobilization for public causes. Out of 9 types of key internet controls categorized by the Freedom House, Turkey has been applying 7 of them including blocking of online communication tools, network shutdowns, increasing censorship through new laws, arrest and imprisonment of opposing internet users.

To sum up, the Freedom of the Net 2017 report illustrates how Turkey has been using the internet to serve the government’s own interests and also to limit individual freedoms such as freedom of expression and right to privacy.

Download pdf version:Freedom of the Net 2017

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