No journalists imprisoned in Turkey, foreign minister claims

Mevlut Cavusoglu, Journalists, Press Freedom, Journalism
Mevlut Cavusoglu, here pictured visiting the Council of Europe in 2016.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusolgu has denied that Turkey has any jailed journalists.

Speaking to journalists at a conference at the The Elcano Royal Institute in Madrid on Friday Cavusoglu said there was not a single person jailed for journalistic activities.

“There is not a single journalist who is under custody in Turkey for writing stories. If there is one, I would like to know who he/she is,” Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Friday in response to a question about press freedom on an official visit to Madrid. “Those who revealed themselves as journalists have either supported terrorism or terrorist organisations.”

Turkey was placed 151st out of 180 countries on the World Press Freedom Index in 2016. According to the Journalists Union of Turkey (TGS) the number of jailed journalists is currently 144, including prominent figures such as Inan Kizilkaya, Ahmet Altan and Kadri Gursel.