The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) is appalled by a recent raid and the arrests of journalists by the government in Turkey.
On 28 September, Turkish state security forces raided several offices in Diyarbakir, south-eastern Turkey: the DIHA news agency, Azadiya Welat daily, Aram Yayınları book publisher, and KURDİ-DER (Kurdish Language Research and Development Union).
Following the raid, the identification and mobile phones of all the journalists were confiscated. 32 journalists were allegedly arrested on the DIHA premises, including: Meltem Oktay, Ramazan Olcen, Zafer Tuzun, Zeynel Abidin Bulut, Mujdat Can, Dicle Muftuoglu, Omer Celik, Resit Bayram, Devren Toptas, Mazlum Dolan, Siyabend Yaruk, Ercan Bilen, Ferah Kılıc, Nurettin Akyıldız, Besalet Yaray, Ferit Koyluoglu, Mahmut Rubanas, Aziz Oruc, Ayse Nevroz, Suzan Toprak, Mehmet Ali Ertas, Nazemin Cap, and Diyar Balkas. Along with them, two reporters from Jinha woman’s news agency and Ozgur Gun TV were arrested.
All of the media workers were arrested on grounds of “reasonable doubt”.
On 29 September, 31 out of the 32 reporters were released. According to DIHA, there was a child among those detained.
SEEMO is a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in South East and Central Europe. SEEMO’s press freedom work is supported by the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) project, as part of a grant by the European Commission.