Jailed journalists mark Working Journalists’ Day: A day of resistance

Jailed journalists marked January 10 Working Journalists' Day in prison, saying; “Even though we are jailed, our struggle to write the truth continues. January 10 is a day of resistance to us.”

According to the Dicle Fırat Journalists' Association (DFG), 87 journalists remain behind bars on January 10, Working Journalists' Day. These include 16 journalists who were arrested in Amed on June 16, 2022, and 9 journalists who were arrested in Ankara on October 29, 2022.

Mesopotamia Agency (MA) Editor-in-Chief Diren Yurtsever, who was sent to Sincan Women's High Security Closed Prison after being arrested as part of an Ankara-based investigation, Berivan Altan, Ceylan Şahinli, Deniz Nazlım, Emrullah Acar, Hakan Yalçın and Selman Güzelyüz, and JINNEWS reporters Habibe Eren and Öznur Değer delivered a message to mark the January 10.


The message said: “The Free Press has also been affected by the crackdown on journalists as Turkey remains a top country where journalists are suppressed. The Free Press has always faced a crackdown, but it has never stopped pursuing the truth. We are also journalists, and we will continue to pursue the truth. For a journalist, the place makes no difference. Wherever we are, we will continue to do journalism. We will continue to protect the honour of journalism."


Serdar Altan, Co-Chair of the Dicle Fırat Journalists Association (DFG), who is jailed in Diyarbakır No. 2 High Security Prison, delivered a message through his family to mark January 10. Noting that journalists obtained their personal rights in 1962 after a long struggle against employers, Altan stated that their rights have been targeted since then. The DFG Co-Chair pointed out that apart from the attacks on their rights, crackdown, detentions, censorship and rights violations against journalists have never stopped. Welcoming January 10 as a "day of resistance", Altan said: “Governments make every effort to prevent us from doing journalism. During the notorious 1990s, they wanted to achieve this by murdering Free Press employees in public. However, when they failed, they started to use the judiciary to punish journalists. They closed the media outlets we worked for. They confiscated our equipment. However, we have never taken a step back in the face of attacks.”

Altan pointed out that 87 journalists welcomed January 10 in prison. He stated: “Even though we are jailed, our struggle to report on the truth continues. It empowers us to know that there are journalists who have the courage to write the truth despite all forms of repression. The days will soon come when we genuinely celebrate January 10 by expanding solidarity among us. I congratulate all my colleagues on January 10, Working Journalists' Day.”