The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) expressed disapproval after it was revealed that 10 social media users were sent to prison in Turkey on charges of “having membership in a terrorist organization” and “disseminating terrorist propaganda”.</p>
On 24 August, Turkish police forces conducted 20 simultaneous raids in 13 districts of Istanbul, detaining a total of 10 Kurdish individuals. They were put in pre-trial detention and accused of “making propaganda” on social media, on the behalf of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
SEEMO expressed aversion for the decisions and actions of Turkish authorities, and called on them to release these individuals. Once again, these are accusations and charges that state institutions commonly use when persecuting individuals for no reason other than a differing or critical opinion expressed publicly or online. Freedom of speech and thought must be introduced to Turkish authorities, and they must begin adopting and respecting them.
SEEMO is a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in South, East and Central Europe and its 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.