The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) together with the Journalists Union of Turkey (Türkiye Gazeteciler Sendikasi – TGS) sent today a letter to the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, asking to ensure all conditions for a fair and independent trial for journalists Füsun Erdogan, Ibrahim Cicek and Ziya Ulusoy. The judicial case of the three journalists will be on the agenda during the upcoming hearing of 23th of March of the Turkish court of appeal in Ankara. Below is the content of the letter sent to the minister :
His Excellency Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey
Dr. Sadık Ahmet Cad. No:8 Balgat / ANKARA 06100
Brussels, 15th of March, 2016
The EFJ/IFJ urge to drop all charges against journalists
The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) together with the Journalists Union of Turkey (Türkiye Gazeteciler Sendikasi – TGS) are sincerely worried about the situation of press freedom in Turkey.
During the last months and years, several media outlets have been confiscated by Turkish authorities, popular social networking services like Facebook and Twitter are being systematically blocked, journalists and media workers are being attacked, threatened or jailed for doing their job or reporting on matters of public interests.
Journalist Füsun Erdogan was first arrested in September 2006 was given a life sentence and convicted in November 2013 on charges that she was a leading member of a Marxist organization banned under the Turkish Anti-Terror Law. Released in May 2014 pending trial, she is now living in the Netherlands as asylum seeker. Her trial will reopen at the appeal court of Ankara on the 23rd of March 2016. Füsun Erdogan is our distinguished colleague known for her articles published by Bianet defending minorities’ rights in Turkey.
The EFJ/IFJ have welcomed her release in May 2014, together with other journalists İbrahim Çiçek and Ziya Ulusoy working for Atilim newspaper, after more than 8 years in pretrial detention. The EFJ/IFJ are now urging the Turkish authorities to ensure that all conditions are put in place for a fair and independent trial at the appeal court of Ankara.The EFJ/IFJ are closely following the case of Füsun Erdogan, İbrahim Çiçek and Ziya Ulusoy and we hope that all the pending charges will be dropped.
Mogens Blicher Bjerregaard