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Journalists in jail

141 JOURNALISTS ARE IN JAIL IN TURKEY AS OF JANUARY, 2021

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In the aftermath of the failed coup, the government closed down ​179 media outlets​ – including 53 newspapers, 37 radio stations, 34 TV channels, ​29 publishing houses​9, 20 magazines, and six news agencies – with accused links to the Gulen movement, Kurdish opposition, or Leftists groups. Consequently, a total of ​2,308 media workers​ and journalists have lost their jobs. The government canceled hundreds of press accreditations and revoked the passports of an unknown number of journalists and their family members to ban them from traveling abroad. In addition, the government imprisoned a record-breaking number of journalists in the wake of the coup attempt – with that, Turkey became the world’s largest prison for journalists.

The Platform for Independent Journalism (P24) reported that at least 126 journalists and media workers were in prison in Turkey as of October 2019, and it was ​155​ in March. – among them, many were put in long solitary confinement. The absence of freedom of expression is not only a recurring problem for journalists but for citizens as well. In 2018, the Ministry of Interior reported that more than 7,000 individuals were detained for their social media posts after investigating 631,233 digital materials.​ In relation to the censorship and content restrictions in the country, Wikipedia has been blocked in Turkey since April of 2017.

Currently, out of the 180 countries, Turkey ranks 154th on the ​Press Freedom Index​ of Reporters Without Borders and are
listed among ‘not free’ countries by the ​Freedom House.

The updated list of 141 jailed journalists prepared by ​the @jailedjournos​ platform and translated by Advocates of Silenced Turkey as of January 2021 is below.

 

THE LIST OF JAILED JOURNALISTS 
Full name The Workplace Job  Duration of Punishment  Prison 
Abdulkadir Akyel Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Edirne
Abdulkadir Civan Today’s Zaman News Academician/Columnist 10 years 5 months İzmir Prison
Abdulkadir Turay Dicle News Agency Correspondent 9 years Mardin Type E
Abdulkerim Bedir Aksiyon Magazine Editor
Abdullah Özyurt Zaman Newspaper Correspondent 7 years 6 months Hatay Prison
Abdurrahim Ersöz Cihan Correspondent Antalya Type L Prison
Adnan Bilen Mezopotamya Agency Correspondent Van High-Security Closed Panel Institution
Ahmet Altan Taraf Newspaper Production Editor and Author 10 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Ahmet Kuzuoğlu Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Bilecik
Ahmet Metin Sekizkardeş Cihan Media Distribution Director 9 years Silivri Prison
Ahmet Torun TRT Haber Channel Editor Sincan Prison
Ahmet Uzan Sabah Egeli News News Director İzmir Aliağa Prison
Alaattin Kaya Belde, Zaman and Star Newspaper Former Franchisee Sincan Prison
Aladdin Akkaşoğlu Akis News Franchisee 8 years 9 months Kütahya Prison
Ali Ahmet Böken TRT Channel News Coordinator 9 years 9 months Akşehir Type T Prison
Ali Aşikar Azadiya Welat Newspaper Worker Van Type M Prison
Ali Demirer Bugün Channel News Director Hatay Prison
Ali Kuş Zaman and Bugün Newspaper Correspondent Silivri Prison
Ali Özparun TRT Channel The Correspondent of Adana Silivri Prison
Ali Ünal Zaman and Yeni Hayat Newspaper Columnist and Interpreter 19 years 6 months İzmir No 2 Type F Closed Prison
Aykut Yıldır TRT Channel The Correspondent of Brussels Silivri Prison
Ayşenur Parıldak Zaman Newspaper Correspondent 7 years 6 months Sincan Prison
Aytekin Gezici Freelance Correspondent and Author 7 years 6 months Adana-Kürkçüler Type E Closed Prison
Bahri Öntemel TRT Channel Broadcast Production Officer İskenderun Prison
Beytullah Özdemir Zaman Newspaper The Representative of Düzce 7 years 6 months Düzce Prison
Burçin Selçuk Dokgöz Zaman News The Correspondent of Çorum
Cemil Uğur Mezopotamya Agency Correspondent Van High-Security Closed Panel Institution
Cengiz Bülbül Zaman News Correspondent Sivas Prison
Çetin Çiftçi Bugün News Correspondent 6 years 3 months Sincan Prison
Cihan Acar Bugün News Correspondent Edirne Prison
Cuma Ulus Can Erzincan Channel Publication Coordinator 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Durmuş Günsur Haber11 .com Owner 8 years 9 months Düzce Prison
Emre Soncan Zaman News Correspondent 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Emrullah Sarı Cihan Medya Dağıtım The Representative of Bolu 7 years 6 months
Ercan Baysal Star News Economy Reporter 7 years 6 months Denizli Prison
Ercan Gün FOX Channel News Director Silivri Prison
Erdal Erçıktı Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Aegean Region
Erdal Şen Habertürk News The Representative of Ankara 6 years 3 months Silivri Prison
Erdal Süsem Eylül Magazine Editor Life sentenced Edirne Type F Prison
Erkan Akkuş Bugün Channel Speaker
Erol Zavar Odak Magazine Editor-in-Chief Life sentenced Bolu Type F Prison
Ersin Demirci Zaman News Regional Director 6 years 3 months Bursa Prison
Eyüp Keser TRT Channel Correspondent 8 years 9 months Sincan Prison
Fahri Öztoprak Zaman News Correspondent 6 years 3 months Erzurum Type H Prison
Faruk Akkan Cihan News Agency Chief Editor 9 years Silivri Prison
Ferhat Çiftçi Azadiya Welat News The Representative of Gaziantep 21 years 8 months Gaziantep Type H Prison
Fethi Altun Cihan News Agency The Correspondent of Şanlıurfa Edirne Prison
Fevzi Yazıcı Zaman News Visual Director 11 years 3 months Silivri Prison
Fikret Altıalay Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Sakarya
Gültekin Avcı Bugün News Former Prosecutor/Columnist 6 years 3 months İzmir Prison
Hakan Taşdelen Fia Production Director 9 years
Halil Bilecen Today’s Zaman News Academician/Columnist 7 years 5 months Urfa Hilvan Prison
Hamit Çalış Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Afyon 9 years 9 months
Hamza Günerigök TRT Channel Speaker 6 years 3 months Osmaniye Prison
Hanım Büşra Erdal Zaman News Correspondent and Columnist 6 years 3 months Bakırköy Women’s Closed Prison
Harun Çümen Zaman News Correspondent 7 years 6 months Balıkesir Kepsut Prison
Hatice Duman Atılım News Owner and Managing Editor Life sentenced Bakırköy Women’s Closed Prison/Istanbul
Haydar Tatlı Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Bayburt
Hidayet Karaca Samanyolu Channel Broadcasting Group President Aggravated life imprisonment Silivri No 9 Type F Prison
Hüdaverdi Yıldırım Bugün Channel Editor Silivri Prison
İbrahim Halil Öztürkeri TRT Channel Production Broadcast Officer 8 years 9 months
İbrahim Karakaş Yeni Yaşam News
İlhan Toprak Anadolu Agency Presidential Correspondent Sincan Prison
İsmail Çoban Azadiya Welat News Managing Editor 5 years Diyarbakır Type D Prison
İsmail Ufakdemir TRT Channel Correspondent
Kadir Güngör Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Trabzon
Kamuran Sunbat Dicle News Agency The Correspondent of Çukurova 11 years 11 months Şırnak Type T Prison
Kazım Canlan Cihan Ankara News Manager 7 yıl 6 months Tarsus Prison
Kenan Duman Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of İzmir
Kenan Karavil Radio Dünya Editor-in-Chief 25 years Tekirdağ Prison
M. Şahin Fidan Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of İzmir
Mahmut Gülecan Özgür Halk Magazine Managing Editor Silivri No 5 Prison
Mehmet Akif Öztürk TRT Channel Technician Sincan Prison
Mehmet Ariaslan Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Amasya Balıkesir Type L Prison
Mehmet Aslan Mezopotamya Agent Correspondent Antalya Type L Closed Prison
Mehmet Baransu Taraf News Correspondent Silivri Prison
Mehmet Bilal Çolak TRT Channel Deputy Head of Foreign Publications Department Elazığ Prison
Mehmet Güleş Dicle News Agency 9 years 4 months 15 days Elazığ Prison
Mehmet Özbek Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Edirne
Mehmet Şirin Çoban TRT Channel Broadcast Production Officer
Melih Gasgar Cihan Correspondent Balıkesir Kepsut Prison
Mesut Mercan Zaman News The Correspondent of Afyon 9 years 9 months
Mikdat Aydemir Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Trabzon
Muhammed Kara TRT Channel Broadcast Production Officer
Muhammed Sait Kuloğlu subuohaber.com Publication Editor 7.5 years Silivri Prison
Muhammet Ali Sarı TRT Channel The Correspondent of Giresun
Muhsin Gün Habertürk Website Editor
Muhyettin Avcı Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Samsun
Murat Çapan Nokta Magazine Managing Editor 22 years 6 months Kandıra Prison
Murat Dağdeviren Demokrat Gebze News Franchisee/Columnist 7 years 6 months Bandırma Prison
Murat Şimşek Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Şanlıurfa
Mustafa Bektaş Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Kocaeli
Mustafa Demir Anadolu Agency Correspondent Kahraman Maraş Prison
Mustafa Egüven TRT Kurdi Channel Broadcast Production Officer
Mustafa Erkan Acar Bugün Newspaper News Director 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Mustafa Gök Ekmek ve Adalet Magazine The Representative of Ankara Aggravated life imprisonment
Mustafa Gökkılıç Habertürk Channel Correspondent
Mustafa Pınar TRT Channel The Correspondent of Adana Batman Prison
Mustafa Ünal TRT Channel Technical Director
Mustafa Ünal Zaman Newspaper The Representative of Ankara 10.5 years Silivri Prison
Mutlu Çölgeçen Sabah Newspaper Editorial Coordinator 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Nadir Yücel Çorum Yıldız Editor in-Chief Çorum Prison
Nazan Sala
Necati Bulut Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Marmara Region Van Type T Prison/Van
Necati Vefa İlhan TRT Channel Productor
Nedim Türfent Dicle News Agency Editor 8 years 9 months Van Prison
Niyazi Özkan TRT Channel Correspondent Sincan Prison
Nuh Gönültaş Bugün Newspaper Columnist Silivri No 9 Prison
Oğuz Usluer Habertürk Channel News Broadcasting Coordinator 7 years 6 months Silivri No 9 Closed Prison
Ömer Faruk Yıldız TRT Channel Broadcast Production Officer
Öner Erek Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Çorum
Orhan Tokmak TRT Channel Correspondent Sincan Prison
Osman Çalık Samanyolu News Radio Publication Director 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Osman Taha Sirkeci TRT Channel Technician Sincan Prison
Özcan Keser TRT Channel İstanbul News Editor 9 years Tekirdağ Muratlı Prison
Özden Kınık TRT Channel TRT Radio News Manager 8 years 1 month 15 days Sincan Prison
Özlem Seyhan Jinha Editor Diyarbakır Prison
Recai Özkaymak Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Erzurum
Savaş Ak Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Ordu
Sebahattin Gürbüz Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Yalova
Sedat Laçiner Haberdar Author/Academician 9 years 3 months 15 days Çanakkale Type E Prison
Şehriban Abi Jinnews Correspondent Van Type T Prison/Van
Serkan Özkan TRT Channel Editing Assembly Operator
Serkan Sedat Güray Burç FM Programmer/English Teacher Silivri Prison
Seyid Kılıç TRT Haber Channel 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Seyithan Akyüz Azadiya Welat News The Representative of Adana 12 years İzmir No 1 Type F Prison
Soner Karabulut The News of Fersude Correspondent
Şükrü Tunçdemir Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Antalya
Talip Bayram Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of Agean Region
Tülay Canbolat Sabah Newspaper Correspondent
Tuncay Akkoyun Cihan Editor Silivri Prison
Turgut Usul TRT Channel Correspondent Sincan Prison/ Ankara
Ufuk Şanlı Vatan Newspaper Author 7 years 6 months Silivri Prison
Ünsal Sabancı TRT Channel The Correspondent of Erdek
Vahit Yazgan Zaman Newspaper The Representative of İzmir Region 9 years 8 months İzmir Kırklar Prison
Yakup Şimşek Zaman Newspaper The Director of Brand Marketing 11 years 3 months Silivri Prison
Yavuz Karaduman Anadolu Agency The Correspondent of Tekirdağ
Yılmaz Kahraman Özgür Halk Magazine Editor 13 years 6 months Silivri No 5 Prison
Zafer Özcan Bugün Newspaper Economy Reporter Akhisar Süleymanlı Prison
Ziya Ataman Dicle News Agency Correspondent Van Type M Closed Prison
Ziya Tek Cihan Media Distribution The Representative of İzmir

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Free Ahmet Altan Poster

Free Ahmet Altan Poster 

Journalist Ahmet Altan is in jail for more than 1000 days in Turkey. Turkey top jailer of journalists in the world.


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PRESS RELEASE: TURKISH JOURNALIST AHMET ALTAN’S ARBITRARY IMPRISONMENT AND CALL FOR HIS RELEASE 8/29/2019

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FOR IMMEDIATE PRESS RELEASE

TURKISH JOURNALIST AHMET ALTAN’S ARBITRARY IMPRISONMENT AND CALL FOR HIS RELEASE

Ahmet H Altan is an acclaimed Turkish novelist with more than ten published books, columnist, journalist, editor-in-chief of a newspaper, and avid defender of democracy, civil rights and freedom of speech for all layers of the society. He was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole with the accusation of being a member of a terrorist organization, attempting to overthrow the government and the constitutional order, interfering with the work of the government and the national assembly. Turkish Supreme Court overturned the decision on him in January 2019. However,  the court denied Ahmet Altan’s petition for release. He was also convicted for insulting the president later in 2019.

Ahmet Altan had spent his career of more than 30 years by dissecting the visible and hidden fault lines threatening democracy and civil rights in Turkey. Throughout his career, Altan has always been subject to attacks and praises for lauding democracy, human rights, and civil liberties for all. He was sentenced to prison for 20 months in 1995 for defending the rights of Kurdish citizens  -his sentencing was later delayed on the condition of not repeating the same “crime”. He published documents obtained from military and bureaucratic sources much like “Pentagon Papers” and “Watergate scandal”. His leadership in enabling investigative journalism in Turkey and his stance on many subjects made him the recipient of more than 100 lawsuits instead of journalism awards. His stand-off with military and government and his principled defense of minorities remind us the likes of Ben Bradlee of The Washington Post (Watergate, Pentagon Papers) and Ralph McGill of Atlanta Constitution (Defending anti-segregation in Jim Crow era Georgia).

In December 2013, a graft probe by the prosecutors against five ministers and their sons as well as the son of the prime minister of the time, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was abruptly nipped in the bud by Erdogan. Altan’s defense of and emphasis on the justice system in a three-legged democratic system ruffled a lot of feathers and brought him the wrath of the government right after the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016. Shortly after, he was detained and arrested. Though he was released on probation, his pseudo-freedom lasted only 24 hours. Upon leaving the courtroom, Ahmet spoke to the press, saying “This country is ours, we are not afraid. We’ll always defend law and democracy”.  During the trial, the prosecutors even claimed that he used his TV appearance the day before the coup attempt to give “subliminal messages” in support of the coup. He also shared the records of his experience during the trial with his lawyer to be made public for future generations. His notes were published and translated to English with the name “I WILL NEVER SEE THE WORLD AGAIN”.

 Snippets from Altan’s writings:

  • “We may die or be killed, be jailed or be tried in the courts, be left unemployed, be tortured or shot, but we may never be defeated. We are the defenders of life.
  • “How crowded is our loneliness! Wherever we turn, we bump into ourselves!”
  • “Love is like a sword wound! It heals but surely leaves its mark.”
  • “You can imprison me, but you cannot keep me here. Because, like all writers, I have magic, I can pass through your walls with ease.”
  • “I will never see the world again; I will never see a sky unframed by the walls of a courtyard. I am descending to Hades. I walk into the darkness like a god who writes his own destiny. My hero and I disappear into the darkness toge”

Today, we urge the Turkish government to enforce the rule of law and to immediately terminate Ahmet Altan’s arbitrary imprisonment! We also call on the international community to urge the authorities in Turkey for his immediate release and Ahmet Altan’s colleagues, friends, readers to speak out!

 

Hafza Y. GIRDAP

Spokesperson

directorhg@silencedturkey.org

 

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Free Journalist Ahmet Altan Flyer

TAKE ACTION TO FREE AHMET ALTAN

“We may never be defeated. We may die or be killed, be jailed or be tried in the courts, be left unemployed, be tortured or shot, but we may never be defeated. We are the defenders of life.”
#FreeAhmetAltan
#AhmetAltanaÖzgürlük

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