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Negative developments with respect to press freedom and freedom of expression in Turkey were addressed as well in the conference held due to May 3 World Press Freedom Day at the European Parliament.
In his speech at the conference, EP President Antonio Tajani underscored that Turkey’s condition is attention-grabbing in terms of press freedom and stated that Turkey regressed 55 positions in Press Freedom Index in the last 10 years.
“73 journalists were arrested only in 2017”
“The reason the seminar is focusing on Turkey is because Turkey is among the countries ‘where press freedom has deteriorated the most’. I the last 10 year – despite the start of accession negotiations – Turkey has lost 55 positions in the Free Press Index and it is now among the worst performers worldwide. In 2017, the EP President said, 73 journalists were arrested in the country.
“According to a report from Die Zeit 155 journalists, arrested after the failed coup d’ état, are still in prison. Amnesty International reports that 180 media outlets have been shut down after July. This unacceptable situation makes it clear that Turkey is turning its shoulders to our core values. It will be hypocritical not to acknowledge this fact and not to draw the inevitable conclusions.
“Turkish authorities still have the possibility to reverse this trend. Our door remains open to Turkish people who should continue to be given an EU perspective. However, without an immediate radical change, there is no place for this Turkey in our Union,” he underlined”. (ŞA/TK)