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Europe calls Turkey to order on respect for press freedom

Zaman editor Ekrem Dumanli arrested by Turkish police. (Zaman TV)
Zaman editor Ekrem Dumanli arrested by Turkish police. (Zaman TV)

(BRUSSELS2) The raids by Turkish police on several media outlets close to Muslim political opponent Fethullah Gülen, notably the Samanyolu television channel, and the arrest of the editorial director of Zaman, are negative signs for the European Union that the Ankara government is no longer running smoothly.

Against freedom of the press...

« The police raids and arrests to several journalists and media representatives in Turkey are incompatible with media freedom, who is a fundamental principle of democracy » jointly reminded Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the EU for deals foreign, and Johannes Hahn, commissioner European in charge of Voisinage in a statement issued on Sunday (December 14). " We wait for that the principle of presumption of innocence prevails et remember the inalienable right à an independent investigation and transparent a cas de alleged fault, with full respect of rights of the accused »

…and European values

This operation, which takes place a few just days after the visit to turkey, carried out by the 3 European Commissioners (Mogherini, Hahn and Stylianids, responsible for Humanitarian Aid) appears like a slap in the face of Europeans who remind us that “ this operation contradicts of european values and standards whose Turkey souhaite to be a part of ».

An obstacle on the road to membership?

But it could also compromise certain chances of seeing the enlargement process restart and new chapters open « All new step towards membership with a country candidate depends on full respect for the primacy of the law and fundamental rights » A reminder that is not just theoretical. The EU Council of Ministers was due on Tuesday (16 December) to discuss the continuation of enlargement policy, especially with Turkey. " I expect that commitment EU farm given by our Turkish counterparts during our visit translates in action »


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).