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IFJ Slams Turkey over Raid on Media House in Istanbul

28 October 2015

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today joined its affiliate, the Journalists’ Union of Turkey (TGS, in Turkish), in condemning the police raid of Kanaltürk and Bugün TV, part of pro-opposition media holding Koza-Ipek, this morning in Istanbul.

Police moved in after a court in Ankara on Monday ordered the seizure of Koza-Ipek, accusing the company of “terror propaganda.” The conglomerate is linked to the US-exiled cleric Ferthullah Gullen, a one-time ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has turned the government’s prominent critic, reports said.

According to media reports, the riot police forced their way into the Istanbul headquarters of media outlets Kanaltürk and Bugün TV and harassed some employees of the targeted media outlets who were trying to access their workplace. Kamil Maman, a reporter for the Bugün daily, was harshly treated and then detained by the police, the TGS reported. Police used tear gas and water cannons in the running battles between the police and protesters, including opposition parliamentarians who spoke of a dark day for democracy and described the police action as politically motivated to silence independent media ahead of Sunday general election.

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