Attack on journalist Hakan unacceptable: Former President Gül
KAYSERİ – Doğan News Agency
DHA PhotoFormer Turkish President Abdullah Gül has described the attack on Hürriyet columnist Ahmet Hakan as “unacceptable,” urging a change in the parlous state of media freedom in the country.
“It is a fact that there is negativity about the press that must immediately change. This situation doesn’t suit Turkey. It is like such a culture has been developing, which I actually find very dangerous,” said Gül, who served as the 11th president of the Turkish Republic until last year.
“Turkey has experienced such things in the past, but in this era it should be unthinkable. No attack against a newspaper or journalist, whether physical or verbal, is acceptable ... I hope all these things will pass. A clear attitude should be expressed against such wrongfulness. Instructions should be given and the perpetrators should definitely be punished. Everyone should be more careful,” he added, speaking in his hometown of Kayseri in Central Anatolia.
The veteran Hürriyet columnist and TV presenter Ahmet Hakan was injured on Oct. 1 in an assault in front of his home in Istanbul, after an intense campaign of intimidation and slander in the pro-government media.