Turkish journalists jailed

Two journalists, Nedem Sener and Ahmet Sik, were sentenced to prison on Sunday pending an investigation into allegations that the military attempted to overthrow the Turkish government in 2003. About 60 journalists are currently imprisoned and thousands face prosecution for their work, reported the Turkish Journalists’ Association.

Meanwhile, there are other concerns about press freedom in Turkey; 600,000 bloggers cannot access their blogs, after Google’s blogging service, Blogspot, was blocked in the country, for example. The site was banned by a Turkish court after users showed football matches on their blogs. Digiturk, a satellite TV firm, has exclusive rights to broadcast the matches in Turkey and approached the courts when it became aware of the matches being shown on the blogs.

Turkish police raid journalists’ homes

Turkish police have detained 10 people, many of them journalists, in the latest crackdown on an alleged secularist network, which is accused of conspiring to overthrow the government. This follows February’s high profile raid on the Oda TV news portal. On Monday blog publishing service blogspot.com was banned inside Turkey.

Four detained in police raid at Turkish news portal

Istanbul police raided leading independent news portal odatv.com and searched the homes of its administrators. Those detained were the neonationalist site’s owner, Soner Yalçin and administrators Baris Terkoglu, Baris Pehlivan and Ayhan Bozcurt. The raids were ordered by Zekeriya Öz, a prosecutor in Ergenekon investigation, on the grounds that the site was holding confidential documents. The ongoing Ergenekon inquiry focuses on elements of the “deep state” working to subvert the government. Yalçin has published a book which denounces the prosecutors in the Ergenekon probe, critics of the case have alleged that the government is using the investigation to silence dissidents.