IPI condemns attack targeting Hürriyet columnist
The Vienna-based International Press Institute (IPI) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) have condemned the attack targeting daily Hürriyet columnist Ahmet Hakan, saying that Turkish authorities desperately needed to take immediate measures to protect journalists' ability to report freely in advance of parliamentary elections scheduled for one month from today.
"It is hard to accept that the savage beating of Mr. Hakan – just weeks after a columnist with pro-government media impliedly threatened him with death – is a coincidence," IPI Director of Advocacy and Communications Steven M. Ellis said in a written statement on Oct. 1. "That is doubly true given the series of violent attacks and bogus criminal cases targeting journalists and media outlets in September. If Turkish officials want the results of the Nov. 1 elections to be viewed as legitimate, they need to take immediate steps to protect journalists from violence and to end these abuses, which appear designed to deprive Turkey's voters of the ability to make an informed decision about their future."
Click here for the full text of the IPI statement