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.

Turkey: Journalists jailed after reporting on demonstration

Two Kurdish journalists have been sentenced to ten months of imprisonment each, after attending a demonstration in 2008. Vedat Yilidiz, Dicle News Agency, and Lokman Dayan, Güneydoğu Ekspres, have been convicted of “spreading propaganda for an illegal organisation”. They were among 25 defendants charged with “membership of an illegal organisation”. Both journalists attended the protests in their professional capacities, they said. The demonstration, at which the journalists were beaten by police, concerned the alleged violence against Abdullah Öcalan, the detained leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party.