EFJ affiliate The Journalists' Union of Turkey (TGS - Türkiye Gazeteciler Sendikasi),
the Journalists Platform, have issued a statement following a series of violent
and unwarranted attacks against journalists during the unrest in Turkey in
"During the police attack yesterday in Taksim, Star Haber correspondent Osman Terkan's finger was broken when it was
hit by the gas canister. Star Haber correspondent Murat Uslu was also wounded
on his abdomen by a rubber bullet fired by a cop targeted from 10 meters.
We have been informed that at the end of the police
intervention, which took place throughout the whole night, journalist Ümit
Akba? was badly wounded by a gas canister which hit his face and meant he was
hospitalized. Journalist Ahmet ??k was also shot in the head by a gas canister and
two foreign journalists received chest wounds. During the incidents which have
taken place over the last 15 days, at least 15 of our colleagues have been wounded.
We protest against these police attacks against
journalists, especially targeted shootings.
The Prime Minister caused the incidents to escalate
rather than listening to the messages from those involved in the demonstrations. These demonstrations
were organised as peaceful protests as long as the police did not attack.
We condemn the Prime Minister for his provocative and
hateful speeches targeting both social segments and the journalists.
We invite all citizens to act prudently, to keep up
with legitimate and legal action, and not to take part in any act of violence.
We request that both the demonstrators and the
security forces avoid physical interventions and speeches targeting the
journalists under any circumstances.
We demand that media owners take all necessary measures
to provide all required equipment to ensure the security of the lives of our
We call on the media houses to cease single-sided and
inducing broadcasting policies, to stop being instruments for the
disinformation efforts of other groups, particularly those in political power,
and to avoid mediating the provocative and hateful speeches.
In accordance with the internationally agreed code of
conducts of journalism, we stress that the main duty of a journalist is
"to respect the right of the public to learn about the facts" and we issue
a reminder of the following main principle included in the Declaration of
Rights and Obligations of Journalists of Turkey:
"The journalist shall defend the respect towards
primarily the peace, democracy and human rights, universal values of the
humanity, multi-vocality and differences. Shall avoid publications inciting the
hate and hostility among people, communities and nations."
FREEDOM FOR JOURNALISTS PLATFORM, TERM CHAIRMAN
JOURNALISTS' UNION OF TURKEY, PRESIDENT Ercan ?PEKÇ?