ISTANBUL (Panorama.am) — The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Representative on Freedom of the Media, Harlem Désir, expressed his concern regarding the recent detentions of several journalists in Turkey, following public demonstrations in different Turkish cities after the removal of several mayors in south-east Turkey, OSCE said in a press release on September 3.
“Journalists should be guaranteed safe working conditions at all times, including while covering protests, and no journalist should be imprisoned in retaliation for their work,” said Désir.
Journalist Ziyan Karahan, who works for the Kurdish service of the Mezopotamya News Agency, and Jinnews reporter Yelda Özbek were detained in Diyarbakır on 19 and 20 August, respectively, and were released a few days later. Also on 20 August, the correspondents of Mezopotamya News Agency, Ahmet Kanbal and Mehmet Şah Oruç, as well as Jinnews reporter Rojda Aydın and journalists Nurcan Yalçın and Halime Parlak, were taken into custody by the police in Mardin. They were later released on 27 August.
In addition, on August 22, Taylan Özgür Öztaş, a reporter for the Özgür Gelecek newspaper, and Tunahan Turhan, a reporter for the Etkin news agency, were detained in Istanbul. A writer and columnist for the Evrensel Daily, Ayşegül Tözeren, was taken into custody by the police on 20 August, following a midnight raid on her Istanbul home. All three were released from custody under judicial control measures on August 23.