Arrest of journalists seeks to incapacitate the Kurdish media

The Free Journalists Initiative (ÖGİ) released a statement on the detention of Mezopotamya News Agency (MA) reporters Berivan Altan, Sadık Topaoğlu and Sadiye Eser.

The statement said that AKP-MHP government has made journalists into a target in an attempt to incapacitate the media outlets that do not spread its propaganda.

Highlighting the attempts to restrain the Kurdish and opposition media, the statement continued; “We demand the immediate release of our colleagues Berivan Altan, Sadiye Eser and Sadık Topaloğlu. We stress that we will continue to fight for the freedom of the journalists behind bars. It should not be forgotten that there can be no free society without free press. On this basis, we call on the democratic public to show solidarity with journalists.”

Journalists Sadiye Eser and Sadık Topaloğlu were detained after they left MA agency office in Istanbul’s Beyoğlu district last night.

The agency’s lawyers went to the Istanbul Security Directorate, where both journalists were held, to inquire about the reason for their detention. The lawyers who wanted to speak to Eser and Topaloğlu at the TEM Branch Directorate, were told that both journalists had been imposed a 24-hour lawyer restriction.

MA journalist Berivan Altan was taken into custody during a raid on her home in Ankara on 26 November in compliance of the arrest warrant issued by Mersin 3rd Penal Court of Peace and brought to Mersin. The custody period of Altan, who is being held in Mersin Provincial Security Directorate, has been extended for 4 more days.