ANKARA- Showing the photograph presented by the police as "evidence" after the detention and arrest of journalists, HDP's Şevin Coşkun said: "This photo is the clearest indicator of how helpless the government, the police and the judiciary are in the face of real journalism."
Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Muş MP Şevin Coşkun spoke about the attacks against the free press at the General Assembly of the Parliament.
Stating that they find it important to investigate, identify and prevent the problems faced by the journalists, Coşkun said: "Necessary steps should be taken immediately in this regard, because journalists are under the ever-increasing pressure of the government, RTÜK (Radio and Television Supreme Council), police, judiciary and media bosses."
COŞKUN RECALLED THE DETENTIONS IN DIYARBAKIR
Noting that journalists are constantly targeted for their journalistic activities, Coşkun said: "They are subjected to violence and face unlawful prosecution. Undoubtedly, those who are most exposed to these attacks are free press workers. Journalists were detained in Diyarbakır on June 8. After an 8-day detention period, 16 journalists including DFG Co-Chair Serdar Altan, JinNews Director Safiye Alagaş, Mesopotamia Agency Editor Aziz Oruç, and Xwebûn Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Mehmet Ali Ertaş were arrested.”
‘THE INDICATOR OF HOW HELPLESS THE GOVERNMENT’
Showing the photographs, which shows the cameras, books and newspapers confiscated from the press institutions and presented by the police as "evidence", Coşkun said: “Cameras, computers and notebooks are used by journalists while performing their jobs were confiscated and these materials, which are indispensable for journalism, were serviced to the press by the Police as evidence of journalists being terrorists. There was nothing else the Police could show as evidence of a crime. In fact, this photograph is the clearest indicator of how helpless the government, the police and the judiciary are in the face of real journalism."
'76 JOURNALISTS IN PRISON'
Emphasizing that the journalists who reported that two citizens were thrown out of a helicopter in Van, Coşkun said: “In 2017 Diyarbakir Nevroz, Kemal Kurkut was murdered in front of the cameras by the police, and while this police officer was acquitted, journalist Abdurrahman Gök, who photographed this moment and showed it to the public, is on trial. 22 years of prison sentence is requested for Gök. Although the government claims that the press is free in the country, the events unfolding day after day and the reports show the opposite. Turkey ranks 108th out of 149 countries in the 2022 World Press Freedom Index of Reporters Without Borders. According to the data of the Dicle Fırat Journalists Association, there are currently 76 journalists in prison."
'JOURNALISTS SHOULD BE RELEASED'
Stating that despite all this pressure, intimidation, obstruction and unlawfulness, journalists are doing their jobs and will never stop reporting the truth,
Coşkun said: "The attacks against the free press and journalists should be stopped as soon as possible and the journalists should be released immediately."