Erdogan’s AKP left 11,000 journalists jobless in 20 years – report
The Turkish Journalists' Association (TGC) said Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has left more than 11,000 journalists jobless within the last 20 years of its governance.
Marking the Working Journalists’ Day via a statement on Tuesday, TGC said during this period, almost 1000 journalists have been in and out of prison and 43 of them were still behind bars, Diken news website reported.
“Turkish government has established its own "echo chamber" with the media organizations it supports and created a world where only the news it wants to hear were published,” TGC said.
Working Journalists’ Day has been celebrated since 1961 on Jan. 10, marking the day of Law No. 212’s publishing in Turkey’s Official Gazette that regulates the rights of journalists. The members of Turkish media under AKP rule regularly face prosecution on terrorism charges over their journalistic activities.
“Turkish government is trying to prevent its activities that are not in the public interest from reaching the public knowledge,” TGC said.
Emphasizing that the independent media outlets are subjected to heavy economic pressure and sanctions that may lead to their closure, TGC said these outlets are prevented from advertisements because of the “black lists” created by the government.
“Even if the picture is dark in this climate of fear we are living in, we maintain our hope of journalism in days when the barriers to freedom of expression and thought are lifted, journalists would be free and journalism would not be considered as a crime,” TGC said.
Turkey was listed among the "worst offenders" of press freedom in the world in 2022 after Iran, China and Myanmar, in a report by the US-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).