US stresses protest rights over Turkey’s ‘coup case’ against football fans
Thirty-five members of çArşı, the iconic supporters’ group of Beşiktaş football club, face life imprisonment over the charges.Turkey should respect freedom of expression and assembly, the U.S. State Department has said, regarding the “coup attempt” charges filed against Turkish football fans for their involvement in last year’s Gezi protests.
Thirty-five members of çArşı, the iconic supporters’ group of Beşiktaş football club, face life imprisonment over the charges.
“I saw those reports. Obviously, we support freedom of expression and assembly, including the right to peaceful protest in Turkey and around the world. We have looked to Turkey to uphold those fundamental freedoms, but don’t have any further comment on it than that,” U.S. Department of State Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf said during a daily press briefing on Sept. 9, upon a question regarding the trial.
Harf also commented on the new legislation that gave sweeping powers to Turkey’s supreme Internet body.
“We’ve regularly raised our concerns about media freedom with Turkish officials, and have continued to urge the Turkish government to ensure open access to all social media. That’s a conversation we will continue having,” she said.
With a new law accepted in Parliament on Sept. 10, Turkey’s Telecommunications Directorate (TİB) has been granted new authority to monitor Internet users and block websites without a court order.