Members of the Journalists Union of Turkey shout slogans during a demonstration to mark World Press Freedom Day in Istanbul, Turkey on May 3. The placard reads: "Enough!" (Reuters/Murad Sezer)

Turkey Crackdown Chronicle: Week of August 27, 2017

By Özgür Öğret/CPJ Turkey Representative on August 31, 2017 12:14 PM ET

Turkish authorities confiscate columnist's passport Turkish police confiscated Aslı Erdoğan's passport as the former advisory board member of the shuttered pro-Kurdish daily Özgür Gündem and frequent columnist was on her way to Germany to accept an award for her work, according to a report yesterday on the online news site sendka.org.

While Erdoğan, who bears no relation to the Turkish president, was previously barred from traveling abroad, Turkish authorities lifted the ban in June 2017, according to media reports.

CPJ has previously documented Erdoğan's imprisonment in August 2016 on terrorism charges and her subsequent release from pre-trial detention in December.

Pro-government daily call on authorities to take over independent daily

Columnists at Turkey's pro-government daily Türkiye yesterday began a Twitter campaign that calls on authorities to take over Hürriyet, the country's largest remaining independent newspaper, the news site Evrensel reported yesterday.

Cem Küçük, Nuri Elibol, and Batuhan Yaşar began posting with the tag "#HürriyeteKayyum," which means a trustee for Hürriyet. The pro-government newspaper's account then started tweeting with the tag as well.

In the months before last year's failed coup attempt, Turkish authorities replaced trustees of independent news outlets with individuals sympathetic to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's regime, according to CPJ research.

Küçük, the columnist whose work is frequently in-step with the government line, wrote yesterday that trustees will take over Hürriyet, and authorities will arrest its owner, businessman Aydın Doğan.

[August 31, 2017]

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