Pz, Ağu

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) continued to use the 15 July coup attempt as cover to sustain its campaign against all opposition voices in October. Like all segments of society, journalists were also subjected to these policies of oppression.


The corridors and halls of Turkey’s courthouses have effectively become a second bureau for the country’s journalists, both amid continuing cases stemming from a solidarity campaign with the now-closed Özgür Gündem newspaper and a large number of other cases targeting journalistic activities.


At the same time, hundreds of journalists find themselves out of work after their workplaces were closed due to state of emergency decrees. After 23 TV and radio stations, including imc TV and Hayatın Sesi TV, were closed at the end of September, employees from the media organs were forcibly removed by police at the beginning of October.


Now demanding a “single voice,” the palace regime of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan closed 15 media organizations on 29 October, including Dicle News Agency (DİHA); the world’s first women’s news agency, Jin News Agency (JINHA); Turkey’s first Kurdish-language national newspaper, Azadiya Welat; as well as the Tîroj and Evrensel Kültür journals. As such, even more journalists were forced to join the ranks of the unemployed.


One the last day of the month, the AKP delivered yet another blow to the free press, detaining 12 journalists and administrators from Cumhuriyet newspaper on the long-winded, alphabet soup-like crime of “aiding the Fethullahist Terror Organization/Parallel State Structure (FETÖ/PDY) and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party/Kurdistan Communities Union (PKK/KCK) network without being a member.”


After the arrest of nine zmpeople from Cumhuriyet, as well as journalist Ayhan Karahan in Bodrum, the number of workers from media outlets and publishing houses languishing in Turkey’s jails has risen to 115.




1 October

Evrensel newspaper writer Murat Özyaşar is detained following a raid on his house in Istanbul. Özyaşar will not be permitted to speak with a lawyer for five days due to the ongoing state of emergency.

Azadiya Welat writer Rênas Jiyan is detained by anti-terror police in a raid in Amed (Diyarbakır).


3 October

Polise and tax officials stage a raid on the building housing Azadi TV, Jiyan TV and Zarok TV, which was closed with a state of emergency decree, conducting a search. Police subsequently sealed the door to Azadi TV while also changing the locks to the door of Jiyan TV and Zarok TV, which broadcasts children’s programs.

Police raid the offices of Radyo Rengîn in Qoser (Kızıltepe), sealing the door.

France-based satellite provider Eutelsat takes Med Nûçe off the air following pressure from the Turkish government.


4 October

Journalists Celal Başlangıç and İnan Kızılkaya, the news editor of the shuttered Özgür Gündem newspaper, appear before a court on “terrorist propaganda” charges as part of a case brought against participants in a solidarity campaign with the newspaper. The case was postponed until 24 November.


An indictment is accepted by the 22nd Istanbul Court of Serious Crimes against journalists Tuğru Eryılmaz, Çilem Küçükkeleş and Dicle Anter for participating in a solidarity campaign with the Özgür Gündem newspaper.


Turkish police seal off Hayatın Sesi TV, which was closed with a decree made possible by the current state of emergency. “This seal has no authority over the truth,” the channel said in a statement.


Turkish police raid imc TV, which was closed with a decree made possible by the current state of emergency, taking it off air. Employees of the channel and others that came in solidarity protested the raid with slogans.


Police stage an attack on Özgür Radyo, which was marked for closure last week, beating and detaining 18 people, including journalists. One of those detained, station employee Ali Sönmez Kayar, suffered head injuries after being beaten by police.


Police and tax officials stage a raid on TV 10 in the evening, sealing the door. Amid frequent tension during the search, Alevi dedes attempted to stop the process by staging a sit-down strike in the broadcasting room.


5 October

Police at Istanbul Atatürk Airport confiscate the passports of journalist Celal Başlangıç, who was flying overseas, and his wife, Ayşe Yıldırım, who bringing him to the airport.


6 October

Ayşenur Parıldak, an arrested former Zaman journalist, informs Cumhuriyet newspaper in a letter that she has been subjected to torture in prison. “I’ve been struck and been subjected to sexual harassment. I was interrogated for eight days straight, day and night,” said Parıldak, who has been under arrested since 11 August.


Evrensel correspondent Cemil Uğur is arrested in Mersin after previously spending 16 days in detention. Uğur and fellow Evrensel reporter Halil İbrahim Polat were detained on 23 August while covering a story before being released on 7 September.


7 October

Writer and teacher Murat Özyaşar, who was detained in a morning raid on his house in Istanbul on 1 October before being transferred to Amed (Diyarbakır), is released after testifying to a prosecutor.


Etkin News Agency (ETHA) reporter Mehmet Anıl is arrested in Adana along with three others. Anıl had been detained during a spate of house raids on 28 September.


9 October

The Prime Ministry imposes a press blackout on news from an attack on the Durak Police Station in Colemêrg’s (Hakkari) Şemzînan (Şemdinli) district, according to Turkey’s media watchdog, RTÜK.


France-based satellite provider Eutelsat announces that it will cease broadcasting Kurdish-language TV station Newroz TV. The channel will continue its broadcast at the following coordinates:

Satellite: Nilesat, Frequency: 11354

S.R: 27500, Pol: Vertical

Fec: 5/6



10 October

Evrensel correspondent Halil İbrahim Polat, who was released on probation after 16 days in custody last month after being detained while covering a news story, is detained once more in Mersin.


11 October

Evrensel newspaper correspondent Halil İbrahim Polat is released after being detained the previous night. Polat had spent 16 days in custody after being detained on 23 August while covering a story in Mersin.


Police raid the house of Doğan News Agency’s (DHA) Dersim correspondent, Ferit Demir, as part of wider raids against local politicians from the Democratic Regions Party (DBP) and the Party of Labor (EMEP).


M. Ali Çelebi, a writer with the closed Özgür Gündem newspaper, appears before the Istanbul 13th Court of Serious Crimes due to an article about Syrian Army attacks on Qamishlo. Çelebi defended himself, saying he was exercising freedom of speech and of the press in the article while demanding his acquittal. The case was postponed to a future date.


13 October
Journalists Nuriye Akman and Lale Kemal, who were arrested in the wake of the 15 July coup attempt, are released.


17 October

Dicle News Agency (DİHA) Mûş (Muş) correspondent İdris Sayılgan is beaten and detained following a morning raid on his house. Police allegedly threatened Sayılgan’s family, seized his cameras and storage cards and broke doors and windows in the house.


The Istanbul 22nd Court of Serious Crimes accepts an indictment against journalist Can Dündar and musician Şanar Yurdatapan for participating in a solidarity campaign with Özgür Gündem newspaper. Together with the newspaper’s arrested news editor, İnan Kızılkaya, Dündar and Yurdatapan were charged with “publishing publications for a terrorist network.” The trio’s first hearing will be on 22 December.


18 October

Three employees at Riha-based (Şanlıurfa) radio station Radyo Karacadağ, Sadık Demir, Mizgin Çay and Salih Erbekler, are arrested on charges of membership in a terrorist organization.


Four people are shot and injured in the leg in an armed attack on a graphic design workplace in the Ferahevler neighborhood of Istanbul’s Sarıyer district. Enes B., the workplace’s owner, and employees Ömer A., Mustafa A. and Yunus B. were all taken to hospital.


19 October

Turkish authorities ban the book “Güneşin Çocukları Êzidîler” (Children of the Sun: The Yazidis), which is published by Aram Publishing House, on the grounds that it made religious propaganda. Sixty books from the publishing house have been banned in the past year, with cases being opened into 53 of them.


Hüseyin Aykol, the former editor-in-chief of the closed daily Özgür Gündem, gives testimony at the behest of a Turkish prosecutor at the Istanbul 13th Court of Serious Crimes on charges of “incitement to commit a crime,” “praising crime and criminals” and “conducting terrorist propaganda.”


20 October

Dicle News Agency (DİHA) correspondent Ayşe Sürme is among those detained in massive morning raids against a number of political party, union and association members in Ankara and Istanbul.


21 October

Financial authorities and police stage a raid on Yön Radyo, which was closed as part of the state of emergency earlier this month.


24 October

The Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office opens an investigation into Hürriyet newspaper following the publication of a story by Hürriyet reporter İsmail Saymaz with the rights holder for the application ByLock, which was allegedly used by the Gülen movement.


Access to Sendika.Org is blocked for a 12th time since 25 July 2015 despite the absence of any official announcement.


25 October

Twenty-three journalists, including Faruk Eren, the chair of DİSK Basın-İş; İnan Kızılkaya, the acting news editor of the closed Özgür Gündem newspaper and journalist Ertuğrul Mavioğlu, appear before judges in various trials at the Istanbul Courthouse.


A Turkish court accepts an indictment against actress Deniz Türkali and İnan Kızılkaya, the acting news editor of the closed Özgür Gündem newspaper, as part of ongoing investigations into a solidarity campaign with the newspaper.


Dicle News Agency (DİHA) correspondent İdris Sayılgan is arrested along with five others following house raids last week in Mûş (Muş). Sayılgan had been beaten while being taken into custody on 17 October.


A Turkish court hears the second hearing in a case into 16 journalists and writers from Atılım newspaper. The case was postponed until 22 December.


Dicle News Agency’s (DİHA) internet site is blocked by the Information Technologies and Communications Directorate (BTK) for the 47th time since 25 July 2015. DİHA is continuing its operations at www.diclehaber48.win.


A court acquits journalists from Kanal D’s “Günaydın” morning program on allegations that they insulted President Erdoğan by showing an allegedly offensive banner from a Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) election rally.


27 October

Dicle News Agency (DİHA) correspondent Bilal Güldem is sentenced to two years and three months in prison “terrorist propaganda” in his social media posts.


29 October

Dicle News Agency and Jin News Agency; Tîroj, Evrensel Kültür and Özgürlük Dünyası journals; as well as the Özgür Gündem, Azadiya Welat, Yüksekova Haber, Batman Çağdaş, Cizre Postası, İdil Haber, Güney Expres, Prestij Haber, Urfanatik and Kızıltepe’nin Sesi newspapers are closed as part of state of emergency decrees No. 675 and 676.


30 October

The Directorate General of Press and Information of the Prime Ministry cancels the permanent press cards of journalists Hasan Cemal and Doğan Akın.


31 October

Cumhuriyet Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Murat Sabuncu and 11 other writers and administrators from the newspaper are detained in raids against the newspaper. The raids were launched on accusations that the newspaper was aiding the Gülenist network and the PKK without being a member, according to the Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office.


Turkish authorities refuse to allow workers at Dicle News Agency’s (DİHA) Ankara bureau to take out their pet parrot, “Tolaz,” before sealing the door following the agency’s forced closure. The bird could die if it is not fed within the day.




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