Chronology of Events

May 2012


30 May 2012

Regional human rights violations raise concerns
Source: SES Türkiye
Date: 30 May12
Human rights violations have taken a wide range, from inter-ethnic tension to domestic violence.
Last year's arrests of two infamous war crimes suspects brought some hope to victims of the 1990s conflicts in the former Yugoslavia that they may one day have justice, according to a recent global human rights report.
http://turkey.setimes.com/en_GB/articles/ses/articles/features/departments/national/2012/05/30/feature-01

29 May 2012

Turkish media expands global presence
Source: SES Türkiye
Date: 29 May 2012
While Turkish soap operas have received much fanfare outside the country, much less noticed is the news media's expansion to regions of strategic interest.
Turkish media has embarked on an ambitious agenda of projecting its reach in multiple languages throughout the Balkans and in regions where Turkey has strategic interests, as the country asserts itself on the international stage.
http://turkey.setimes.com/en_GB/articles/ses/articles/reportage/2012/05/29/reportage-01


Court bans pro-Kurdish weekly
Source: IFEX
Date: 29 May 2012 Demokratik Vatan, Newspaper
VIENNA, May 23, 2012– A Turkish court has issued a one-month publication ban against pro-Kurdish weekly newspaper Demokratik Vatan for allegedly spreading terrorist propaganda, news website Bianet reported today.
The court reportedly based its decision on an issue that included articles titled "Our martyrs are the proof of our war of liberation", "Month of martyrs" and "The names of the HPG (Hêzên Parastina Gel/People's Defense Force) guerrillas have been released”.
Bianet said the court considered the articles “announcements” of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and that it ordered all copies seized. The court also opened an investigation into Chief Editor Arafat Dayan.
IPI Press Freedom Manager Barbara Trionfi said: “Blanket censorship such as this is a clear violation of press freedom and against the principles of democracy. Bans on publications are never an acceptable response to objections to content and we urge Turkey's Parliament to amend current anti-terror law to end these types of bans.”
Turkish Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin said in late March following the issuance of a similar, one-month publication ban against daily newspaper Özgür Gündem that a judicial reform package pending before Parliament would do just that. The ban on Özgür Gündem was reversed within days and IPI and its affiliate, the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), today called for a similar reversal of the ban on Demokratik Vatan.
In related news, Bianet also said today that Turkey's Council of State has banned the use on television of the term “guerrilla” to describe members of the PKK.
The decision reportedly stems from a 2009 CNN Türk broadcast that led the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) to issue a warning penalty after it determined that use of the word constituted “broadcasting against national security”. An administrative court later cancelled the penalty, Bianet said, determining that “the word 'guerrilla' should not be assessed on its own, disregarding the integrity of the TV program”. The Council of State, however, disagreed, commenting: “The term 'Guerrilla' is used to refer to insurgents who are fighting for a legitimate purpose. The use of the term for members of the PKK is legitimizing the terrorists and the terrorism.”
The move stands in contrast to a recent decision in which Turkey's court of last instance for reviewing criminal verdicts cited guarantees of freedom of expression in Turkey's Constitution and in the European Convention on Human Rights to reverse prison sentences handed to Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) members Hatip Dicle and Selim Sadak. The pair was sentenced following an interview on pro-Kurdish channel Roj TV in which they used the word “guerrilla” to describe PKK members and referred to imprisoned PKK founding member Abdullah Öcalan as “sayın”, which means “Mr.” or “esteemed”. http://www.ifex.org/turkey/2012/05/29/kurdish_weekly_banned/


Turkish media expands global presence Source: SES Türkiye
Date: 29 May 12
While Turkish soap operas have received much fanfare outside the country, much less noticed is the news media's expansion to regions of strategic interest.
Turkish media has embarked on an ambitious agenda of projecting its reach in multiple languages throughout the Balkans and in regions where Turkey has strategic interests, as the country asserts itself on the international stage. http://turkey.setimes.com/en_GB/articles/ses/articles/reportage/2012/05/29/reportage-01


EP President Schulz: “We are worried about increasing cases for journalists.”
Source: NEWS ETC. 
Date: 29 May 2012
Martin Schulz, the President of the European Parliament was at Istanbul Bilgi University’s Santral campus where he was presented an honorary doctorate. “We are very worried about the cases at which we are looking very carefully, to every single case,” said Schulz answering a question by News. Etc. about some 100 journalists detained in prisons pending sentencing by the courts.
http://en.habervesaire.com/haber/2346/

28 May 2012

Two Journalists Released, 101 still behind Bars
Source:  Bianet
Date: 28 May 2012
The number of imprisoned journalists in Turkey went down to 101. DİHA Batman representative Altan and Diyarbakır representative Kaya were released on 28 March.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/137265-two-journalists-released-101-still-behind-bars


Atılım Newspaper Seized 3 Times in 1 Month
Source:  Bianet
Date: 28 May 2012
The 24 March issue of the weekly Atılım newspaper was confiscated on the grounds of "making propaganda for an illegal organization". Also the issues from 3 and 10 March were seized for the same reason.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/137239-atilim-newspaper-seized-3-times-in-1-month

27 May 2012

PRESIDENT GÜL TAKES PART IN "SOCIAL MEDIA"
Source: TRT
Date: 27.05.2012
President Abdullah Gül who is holding contacts in the United States, took part in San Francisco in a program called 'Social Media" broadcast on TRT News.
President Gül replied to questions on topical matters.
http://www.trt-world.com/trtworld/en/newsDetail.aspx?HaberKodu=ee15c57b-b1cf-4991-9567-e3fac224ad1a

26 May 2012

Publication Ban for Özgür Gündem Newspaper
Source:  Bianet
Date: 26 May 2012
The publication of the Özgür Gündem newspaper was suspended for one month. The Gün Printing Company was raided by the police and the Sunday's issue of the newspaper was confiscated.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/137188-publication-ban-for-ozgur-gundem-newspaper

25 May 2012

Journalists quit over 'censorship' at local Turkish paper
Source: Hurriyet
Date: 25 May 2012
All 33 employees of a local newspaper in Turkey's north have quit after the owner signed a protocol curbing the scope of news that would appear in the paper, CNNTürk reported today. 
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/journalists-quit-over-censorship-at-local-turkish-paper-.aspx?pageID=238&nid=21592&NewsCatID=341

24 May 2012

Turkey 2012 human righs reports by Amnesty International
Source: Erkan’s Field Diary
Date: 24 May 2012
Promised constitutional and other legal reforms did not occur. Instead, the right to freedom of expression was threatened and protesters faced increased police violence. Thousands of prosecutions brought under flawed anti-terrorism laws routinely failed fair trial standards. Bomb attacks claimed the lives of civilians. No progress was made in recognizing the right to conscientious objection or in protecting the rights of children in the judicial system.
http://erkansaka.net/archives/16662
HERE IS THE TURKEY SECTION http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/turkey/report-2012

23 May 2012

Yours truly in the Turkish media
Source: Journalistinturkey
Date: 23 May 2012
As you could read here, I have been to Gülyazi village for eight days last week. This sparked some interest from the Turkish media. It started with a column by my friend and colleague Amberin Zaman, who writes for The Economist and for daily paper Habertürk.
http://www.journalistinturkey.com/blogs/yours-truly-in-the-turkish-media_3135/


"Decree of the Council of State is a Limitation to Press Freedom”
Source:  Bianet
Date: 23 May 2012
Although the Supreme Court evaluated using the word "guerilla" on televisions in the scope of freedom of expression, the Council of State has decreed the opposite. Barış Günaydın, lecturer at Anadolu University Faculty of Communication, Press Law Department, reminded Article 10 of European Convention on Human Rights.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138551-decree-of-the-council-of-state-is-a-limitation-to-press-freedom


Demokratik Vatan Newspaper Banned for 1 Month
Source:  Bianet
Date: 23 May 2012
Istanbul 9th High Criminal Court has ordered the temporary closure of Aydınlık newspaper, under allegations of "spreading propaganda for a terrorist organization".
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138542-demokratik-vatan-newspaper-banned-for-1-month


“She Was Supposed to Be a Journalist, Not a Prisoner”
Source:  Bianet
Date: 23 May 2012
Emine would be graduated as a journalist a year later, however she’s been in jail for nine months, like hundreds of other arrested students.
http://bianet.org/english/human-rights/138548-she-was-supposed-to-be-a-journalist-not-a-prisoner


Turkish Court Issues Ban on Newspaper
Source: International Press Institute (IPI)
Date: 23 May 2012
VIENNA, May 23, 2012 – A Turkish court has issued a one-month publication ban against pro-Kurdish weekly newspaper Demokratik Vatan for allegedly spreading terrorist propaganda, news website Bianet reported today.
The court reportedly based its decision on an issue that included articles titled "Our martyrs are the proof of our war of liberation", "Month of martyrs" and "The names of the HPG (Hêzên Parastina Gel/People's Defense Force) guerrillas have been released”. Bianet said the court considered the articles “announcements” of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and that it ordered all copies seized. The court also opened an investigation into Chief Editor Arafat Dayan.
http://www.freemedia.at/home/singleview/article/turkish-court-issues-one-month-ban-on-newspaper.html

19 May 2012

Anadolu Agency declared its Social Media principles
Source: Andalou Agency
Date: 19 May 2012
ANADOLU AGENCY SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY
-Considers social media the most efficient future news and communication means,
-makes its plans and projects within the framework of its centennial vision on the concept of "New Media", shaped by social media networks.
http://www.aa.com.tr/en/headline/52239--anadolu-agency-declared-its-social-media-policy

14 May 2012

Freed journalists tell of captivity in Syria
Source: Hurriyet
Date: 14 May 2012
After two months in detention, Adem Özköse, 34, and Hamit Coşkun, 21, took a plane from Tehran that landed early May 13 in Istanbul, where they were greeted by friends and relatives.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/freed-journalists-tell-of-captivity-in-syria.aspx?pageID=238&nid=20600&NewsCatID=338


Turkish journalists freed after two months' captivity in Syria
Source: Cumhuriyet
Date: 14 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists freed after two months' captivity in Syria told on Sunday how they were held in a tiny, underground cell by gunmen loyal to President Bashar al-Assad with guns pointed at their heads, fearing they would be killed.
http://en.cumhuriyet.com/?hn=337414


"Just a Few Journalists Under Arrest due to Journalistic Activities”
Source:  Bianet
Date: 14 May 2012
"There are a few journalists that are in prison due to their journalistic activities in Turkey. I do not accept that there are hundreds of them” said Vice Prime Minister Arınç.
 http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138310-just-a-few-journalists-under-arrest-due-to-journalistic-activities


PRESIDENT GÜL SHARES HIS VIEWS VIA INTERNET
Date: 14. May 2012
Source: TRT President Abdullah Gül shared his visits to Adıyaman and Şanlıurfa on a social networking website.
President Gül greeted the Mothers Day and congratulated Galatasaray for winning the Football Championship.
President Abdullah Gül informed the visitors of his social sharing website that he was watching the match with an excitement.
http://www.trt-world.com/trtworld/en/newsDetail.aspx?HaberKodu=a2c016f5-a140-45a0-8b2b-acd38854ba13

13 May 2012

Freed Turkish journalists feared they would die in Syria
Source: Todayszaman
Date: 13 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists freed after two months' captivity in Syria told on Sunday how they were held in a tiny, underground cell by gunmen loyal to President Bashar al-Assad with guns pointed at their heads, fearing they would be killed.
http://www.todayszaman.com/news-280281-freed-turkish-journalists-feared-they-would-die-in-syria.html 


A Guesstimate Analysis: Exchanging Turkish Journalists for Iranian Pilgrims
Source: The Istanbulian
Date: 13 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists, who were jailed by the Syrian regime, were released on Saturday after two months of imprisonment, as part of what appears to be a prisoner swap between Turkey and Iran through intermediaries in Syria.
http://istanbulian.blogspot.com/ 


TURKISH JOURNALISTS HOME AFTER DETENTION IN SYRIA
Source: TRT
Date: 13 May 2012
Two journalists who were detained in Syria for two months have arrived back in Turkey Adem Özköse and Hamit Coşkun were on a Prime Ministry plane that landed in İstanbul Atatürk Airport at 00.30 am Sunday.
The journalists were greeted by their families, relatives and Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay.
Atalay said that the two journalists were released as a result of Turkey's initiatives and thanked everybody who exerted efforts for their release. Atalay said that a humanitarian drama is experienced in Syria.
http://www.trt-world.com/trtworld/en/newsDetail.aspx?HaberKodu=e0c3978f-47ca-47c5-9de1-92499de94f7b


Turkish journalists return home from Syria
Source: Haber Turk
Date: 13 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists who were detained in Syria for two months say they felt most at risk in the early stage of their captivity, when pro-government militiamen put guns to their heads and threatened them. http://www.haberturk.com/general/haber/741967-turkish-journalists-return-home-from-syria

12 May 2012

Two Turkish journalists released but more than 37 Syrian journalists still held
Source: Reporters Without Borders
Date: 12 May 2012
Reporters Without Borders is relieved to learn that two Turkish journalists who were captured while making a documentary in northwestern Syria two months ago were released today. Turkish foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu said the Iranian government acted as mediator in their release.
http://en.rsf.org/turquie-two-turkish-journalists-and-syrian-15-03-2012,42122.html


Court to protect domestic violence victim TV host
Source: Hurriyet
Date: 12 May 2012
Minister of Family and Social policies Fatma Şahin says they are a party to a case in which an anchorwoman and her aunt are beaten by the former’s husband, who is an inspector for the Prime Ministry
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/court-to-protect-domestic-violence-victim-tv-host.aspx?pageID=238&nID=20550&NewsCatID=339


Freed Turkish journalists arrive from Iran
Source: Hurriyet
Date: 12 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists who went missing while reporting on the uprising in Syria two months ago were released on Saturday with Iran's help, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/freed-turkish-journalists-arrive-from-iran.aspx?pageID=238&nid=20586&NewsCatID=338


Freedom for two journailsts!
Source: Haber Turk
Date: 12 May 2012
Turkey announces missing journalists are brought to Tehran
Two missing journalists Adem Özköse and Hamit Coşkun has been released from Syria to fly to Tahran today. Turkey's Foreign Affairs Misiter Ahmet Davutoğlu announced that another plane is on the way to Tahran to bring the 2 journalists to Turkey.
http://www.haberturk.com/general/haber/741681-freedom-for-two-journailsts


Media Association calls on Damascus to release Turkish journalists
Source: The Media Association
Date: 12 May 2012
Turkey’s Media Association, a journalists and press freedoms group, has called on the Syrian administration to immediately release two Turkish journalists currently held in Syria.
http://www.medyadernegi.org/en/suriyede-tutuklu-gazeteciler-serbest-birakilmali/

9 May 2012

İHH says Iranians helped locate missing Turkish journalists in Syria
Source: Todayszaman
Date: 9 May 2012
Two journalists from Turkey's Milat daily who went missing in Syria two months ago were located thanks to the efforts of the Humanitarian Aid Association (İHH), which says Iranian officials helped in determining the whereabouts of the two men.
http://www.todayszaman.com/news-279834-ihh-says-iranians-helped-locate-missing-turkish-journalists-in-syria.html

7 May 2012

Release of 2 Turk journalists in Syria to 'take time': group
Source: Cumhuriyet
Date: 7 May 2012
Two Turkish journalists held by Syrian authorities are in good health but their release is likely to take time, a member of the Turkish Islamist aid group IHH told AFP Sunday.
http://en.cumhuriyet.com/?hn=335638

5 May 2012

Press freedom lessens in Southeast Europe
Source: SES Türkiye
Date: 5 May 2012
A new report by Freedom House shows a mixed picture of media freedom in Southeast Europe in 2011. Over the past 12 months, the situation worsened most significantly in Macedonia, while notable improvements were made in Kosovo and Montenegro. http://turkey.setimes.com/en_GB/articles/ses/articles/features/departments/world/2012/05/04/feature-01

4 May 2012

May 1st and the Academic Freedom
Source:  Bianet
Date: 4 May 2012
Sabanci University banned 1st of May posters. The administration did not hesitate to warn students that this kind of activity may end up with their expulsion from the University.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138100-may-1st-and-the-academic-freedom


Turkey In Top Five of RSF “Journalists in Jail” List!
Source:  Bianet
Date: 4 May 2012
According to RSF report, Turkey is one of the top-five countries ranked in "the countries with the most journalists in jail”.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138093-turkey-in-top-five-of-rsf-journalists-in-jail-list


Media Seminars 2011 notes published in a book
Source: The Media Association
Date: 4 May 2012  
Lecture notes of the Media Association’s “Media During a Period of Change” seminar series, which was held at the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Foundation University last Fall, have been published in a book.  To reach the electronic version of the book (only available in Turkish), please click here.
http://www.medyadernegi.org/en/medya-seminerleri-kitapcigi-yayinlandi/

3 May 2012

World Press Freedom Day 2012
Source: The Media Association
Date: 3 May 2012
Celebrating World Press Freedom Day reminds us how important free press is for a democratic society. We wish all
journalists a Happy World Press Freedom Day and, using this occassion, commemorate all journalists who got killed in line of duty.
http://www.medyadernegi.org/en/3-mayis-dunya-basin-ozgurlugu-gunu-2/


100 journalists remain in jail in Turkey, says new report
Source: Todayszaman
Date: 3 May 2012
As the world celebrated World Press Freedom Day on Thursday, 100 journalists and 35 news distributors are in jail in Turkey. The Independent Communication Network (Bianet) released on Thursday its regular Media Monitoring report for the first three months of 2012, detailing the strides and setbacks in media freedom and freedom of speech in Turkey.
http://www.todayszaman.com/news-279299-100-journalists-remain-in-jail-in-turkey-says-new-report.html


State of media freedom worsening in Turkey, press groups caution
Source: Hurriyet
Date: 3 May 2012
International Press Institute (IPI) and Turkish Journalist Association warn against the worsening situation of media freedom.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/state-of-media-freedom-worsening-in-turkey-press-groups-caution.aspx?pageID=238&nid=19850&NewsCatID=339


Journalism Organizations Discussed Press Freedom
Source:  Bianet
Date: 3 May 2012
Press Council, ÇGD, G-9 Journalist Organizations Platform, The Media Association, TGC, TGDP, The Federation of Journalists Turkey and TGS expressed the obstacles and solutions towards press freedom and freedom of expression issues in Turkey.
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138067-journalism-organizations-discussed-press-freedom

2 May 2012

May 3, ‘World Press Freedom Day’ with 100 Journalists in Prison!
Source:  Bianet
Date: 2 May 2012
100 journalists and 35 newspaper distributors were in jail in the first quarter of 2012. 21 people, including 12 journalists, were facing imprisonment of 254 years in total under allegations of "propaganda for an illegal organization"
http://bianet.org/english/freedom-of-expression/138061-may-3-world-press-freedom-day-with-100-journalists-in-prison


World Press Freedom Day: in Europe Turkey Still in Focus
Source:  IFJ
Date: 2 May 2012
The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the European group of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), has today marked World Press Freedom Day by focusing on the severe threats to press freedom in Europe, with a special focus on over 100 imprisoned journalists in Turkey .
http://www.ifj.org/en/articles/world-press-freedom-day-in-europe-turkey-still-in-focus

1 May 2012

AA Director General Ozturk meets counterpart at Kuwait News Agency
Source: Andalou Agency
Date: 1 May 2012
Chairman of the AA Executive Board and Director General Kemal Ozturk met on Tuesday with the Director General of the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) Sheikh Mubarak Al-Douaij Al-Ibrahim Al-Sabah in Kuwait.
http://www.aa.com.tr/en/headline/48472--s