Turkey: Silencing the Media

Turkey: Silencing the Media
The 69-page report, “Silencing Turkey’s Media: The Government’s Deepening Assault on Critical Media,” documents five important components of the crackdown on independent domestic media in Turkey, including the use of the criminal justice system to prosecute and jail journalists on bogus charges of terrorism, insulting public officials, or crimes against the state. 
Human Rights Watch also documented threats and physical attacks on journalists and media organizations; government interference with editorial independence and pressure on media organizations to fire critical journalists; the government’s takeover or closure of private media companies; and restrictions on access to the airwaves, fines, and closure of critical television stations.
Human Rights Watch found that the crackdown has not only targeted media and journalists associated with the Gülen movement, which the government alleges is a terrorist organization responsible for the July coup attempt, but also pro-Kurdish media and independent voices critical of the government such as the newspaper Cumhuriyet and its journalists. HRW looked at the use of emergency powers, and at Turkey’s overbroad terrorism laws and pliant justice system as means of repression.
The report is based on 61 in-depth interviews with journalists, editors, lawyers, and press freedom activists, and a review of court documents relating to the prosecution and jailing of journalists and media workers.