European Journalists Condemn Attacks on Media at May Day Demonstration in Turkey

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its European group, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), today condemned the attacks on journalists on May 1st and the arrest of Turkish trade union leaders and trade union activists commemorating the 30th anniversary of a deadly May Day attack on demonstrators in Istanbul that left 34 dead.

At the demonstration on Tuesday the government banned live transmission by media of the events taking place in Taksim square.

"It is unacceptable for the police to prevent journalists from fulfilling their duty and to arrest peacefully demonstrating trade unionists by using tear gas and other forms of violence", said Arne König, chair of the EFJ. "Several journalists have been beaten and seriously injured by the police. This is completely unacceptable and we ask the Turkish government to take the responsibility."

The EFJ’s affiliate in Turkey, the Türkiye Gazeteciler Sendikasi (TGS), condemned the attack and is concerned and deeply frustrated by the turn political events seem to be taking in Turkey at the present time.

The EFJ is considering a proposal to send another mission to Turkey in order to analyse the media situation in the country and to give support to journalists and its affiliates there.

“Today, on World Press Freedom Day, we are calling on the Turkish government to allow the media to work freely and independently so that they can keep the public well-informed about events in the country,” König said.

For more information contact the EFJ at 32 2 235 2200
The EFJ represents over 260.000 journalists in more than 40 countries