Last Updated: Friday, 16 February 2018, 15:01 GMT

Timeline of censorship in Turkey

Publisher Reporters Without Borders
Publication Date 4 November 2015
Cite as Reporters Without Borders, Timeline of censorship in Turkey, 4 November 2015, available at: [accessed 19 February 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Because of the increasingly frequent media freedom violations in Turkey, Reporters Without Borders is starting a Turkey news feed in which it will report significant incidents, in addition to its regular press releases.

03.11.2015 - 71 Ipek Media Group journalists fired

Reporters Without Borders condemns the dismissal of 71 Ipek Media Group journalists following the government's forcible seizure of the group at the end of last month. On 3 November, 58 employees of Ipek Media Group-owned outlets Bugün TV, Kanaltürk, Bugün and Millet were turned back at a police checkpoint when they arrived for work in Istanbul. Thirteen Ankara-based colleagues learned they had been fired in the evening.

Interrupted when the police raided them on 28 October, the operations of these opposition media resumed the next day with a new, pro-government line after the management was replaced by government allies and the journalists were placed on forced leave. Some of their journalists have launched two new dailies, Özgür Bugün and Özgür Millet.

"This continuing purge of critical news media in the wake of the parliamentary elections bodes ill for the future of media freedom in Turkey," said Johann Bihr, the head of the Reporters Without Borders Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk.

03.11.2015 - Two opposition journalists jailed

Reporters Without Borders calls for the immediate release of Cevheri Güven, the publisher of the weekly Nokta, and Murat Capan, its editor. They were arrested last night on suspicion of "inciting criminal activity" in the wake of the parliamentary elections but an Istanbul court today ordered them held on the more serious charge of "inciting armed revolt against the government."

Their arrests were prompted by the weekly's latest issue (Issue No. 24), which had a photograph of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and a calendar on the front cover together with the headline: "Monday 2 November, start of civil war in Turkey." The police have seized all available copies and Nokta's website has been blocked.

Highlighting the absurdity of the charges, the journalists said the issue was sent to the printers on 30 October, two days before the 1 November parliamentary elections. The cover did not, therefore, refer to the elections results, which have surprised most observers, but to the polarization in Turkey in the run-up to the elections.

The arrests of Güven and Capan have brought to five the number of pro-Gülen Movement journalists now detained. The others are Hidayet Karaca, Mehmet Baransu and Gültekin Avci. Capan is also being investigated in connection with an earlier cover in September said to have "insulted the president."

(Photo: Ozan Kose / AFP)

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