HDP co-chair visits Hürriyet over attacks on daily, columnist

HDP co-chair visits Hürriyet over attacks on daily, columnist

Sefa Özkaya – ISTANBUL
HDP co-chair visits Hürriyet over attacks on daily, columnist Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş made a visit to the building of daily Hürriyet on Oct. 8 to express his support to the daily in the wake of recent attacks on the daily and one of its leading journalists.

“Politicians should avoid publicly pointing to media outlets as targets,” Demirtaş said during his visit to the daily’s building, which was subjected to two separate attacks in less than 48 hours in early September by a group of protesters, with Justice and Development Party (AKP) Istanbul deputy Abdurrahim Boynukalın delivering a violence-inciting speech to them.

During the visit along with his wife, Başak Demirtaş, and HDP Istanbul deputy Garo Paylan, Demirtaş made remarks on the recent attack on the daily’s leading columnist Ahmet Hakan outside his home in early October.

“Those who committed [the attack on Hakan] should immediately be found and tried within a comprehensive investigation. The attack occurred in front of everyone,” Demirtaş said. 

Hakan was attacked outside his home in Istanbul’s Şişli district on Oct. 1 by four perpetrators, including three AKP members.

Demirtaş said his party was worried about pressure on media outlets in Turkey and that media outlets and journalists should be able to work freely. 

“In the aftermath of these sorts of attacks [such as that on Hakan], comprehensive investigations should be launched and judicial means should be lawfully used to prevent future attacks,” Demirtaş said.

Demirtaş said no one could force media outlets to retreat with such attacks, adding that it was pointless to “scare, threaten and attack media groups to change their coverage on behalf of you.”

Demirtaş, during his visit, met with Hürriyet Chairperson Vuslat Doğan Sabancı, Hürriyet Editor-in-Chief Sedat Ergin and Hürriyet Daily News Editor-in-Chief Murat Yetkin.

“Demirtaş expressed his support to our daily; we would like to express once more our gratitude for his visit,” Ergin said outside the daily’s building.