Turkish Journalist Faces Prison Over Paradise Papers

Journalist Pelin Ünker has been sentenced to jail over the Paradise Papers investigation after being found to have defamed Turkey’s former prime minister and two of his sons. An Istanbul court sentenced the ICIJ member to imprisonment for 13 months for “defamation and insult.” Ünker, who reported that former prime minister Binali Yildirim and his sons owned companies in Malta in the Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet, was also fined $US1615. Prime minister from May 2016 to July 2018, Yildirim became speaker of Turkey’s Grand National Assembly after the post of Prime Minister was abolished. Following her sentencing, Ünker told ICIJ that she intended to appeal what was an extraordinary but unsurprising court ruling. Ünker said what made the “world first” ruling so remarkable was that the complainants acknowledged that her articles were true.

Source: ICIJ

Posted on: January 9, 2019

CPJ: Jailed Journalists at Record Numbers

Waves of repression in China, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia fueled the imprisonment of record numbers of journalists, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. In its annual global survey, CPJ identified at least 251 journalists in jail tied to their work. "The past three years have recorded the highest number of jailed journalists since CPJ began keeping track," the group found, "with consecutive records set in 2016 and 2017." Leading the pack: Turkey, China, and Egypt, who together were responsible for over half of those behind bars for the third year in a row.

Source: CPJ

Posted on: December 13, 2018

New CPJ Campaign to Free Jailed Journos

The Committee to Protect Journalists today launched a new campaign to free the record 262 imprisoned journalists around the world. Based on easily-mailed postcards sent from the CPJ site, the campaign is designed to build support and pressure in the lead-up to World Press Freedom Day on May 3. CPJ is focusing at first on five journalists wrongly imprisoned in China, Republic Congo, Egypt, Kyrgystan and Turkey. You can follow the campaign at #FreeThePress.

Source: CPJ.org

Posted on: April 2, 2018

CPJ Finds Record 259 Journalists in Prison

Turkey leads the world in number of journalists imprisoned, with at least 81 behind bars under the Erdogan regime, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists annual census. The 259 journalists in prison worldwide is the highest number recorded since CPJ began keeping records in 1990. The Turkish journalists all face anti-state charges following an unprecedented crackdown that has shut down over 100 news outlets. 

Source: Committee to Protect Journalists

Posted on: January 16, 2017