On March 4, 2016, exactly one year ago today , hundreds of riot police officers fired rubber bullets and gassed loyal readers of Turkey’s best-selling daily when they stood vigil on the sidewalk across the newspaper’s offices to peacefully protest the news of impending the unlawful takeover of Zaman newspaper.
Journalist Abdulhamit Bilici, who was dismissed as editor-in-chief of Zaman said the Zaman daily should have kept its distance from the ruling AKP. He also said his media group made a mistake by not objecting to the imprisonment of journalists in the late 2000s.
The Turkish-language newspaper “Zaman” will stop operations in Germany after “threats” to readers, a staff member has said. The Turkish government took over the paper in Turkey itself in March. “Our subscribers are being visited; they are being threatened that if they continue to subscribe, they will have problems,” Bag said. He added that the current situation in Turkey, where the government is carrying out a wide-ranging media purge, was spilling over into Germany.
Thanks to a new decree law released as part of the state of emergency declared late on July 20 following a failed coup, Turkey’s government is now set to seize all the Turkish companies owned by businessmen somehow linked to the US-based Islamic Scholar Fethullah Gülen.
Before the live feed was cut from the Zaman building on that Friday in March, I watched police shoot rubber bullets into the crowd gathered to protest the paper’s seizure. Bloodied, the crowd retreated, still screaming for free speech but knowing hope was gone.
Sevgi Akarçeşme, former editor in chief of Today’s Zaman, recalls the night when the police raided the building of the most important and independent opposition newspaper in Turkey. «What happened to journalists today» she warns « can happen to citizens tomorrow».
Turkish government seized control of Zaman Newspaper, the largest and highly circulated newspaper in Turkey. The takeover is a violation of the freedom of press which is vital for every democratic state and requires political intervention from the international community.
Turkish police have raided the offices of Zaman, the country’s biggest newspaper, hours after a court ruling placed it under state control. Police entered the building in Istanbul late on Friday, firing tear gas at protesters who had gathered outside. Zaman is closely linked to the Hizmet movement of influential US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. Turkey […]
The Turkish government’s seizure of Zaman, the largest-selling newspaper in Turkey, is an attack on the country’s human rights, civil society and freedom of expression and the media. In his effort to consolidate power and silence all dissent, president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s actions only serve to highlight his growing authoritarian tendencies.
Monday marks the first anniversary of a government-backed operation against prominent media groups in the country that resulted in the detention of dozens of individuals, mostly high ranked media personnel, and ever since that day pressure on critical journalists and news outlets has skyrocketed in the country, leading to the take-over and even closure of many media outlets and the incarceration of many journalists.