Jan 17 2018

OSCE calls on Turkey to reverse ‘grave’ decision on jailed journalists

The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe called on Turkey to ensure that a decision by its Constitutional Court that released jailed journalists is implemented.

The journalists, Mehmet Altan and Şahin Alpay, should be released without further delay, Harlem Désir, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, said on Wednesday.

Désir made the request in a letter to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, according to the OSCE statement.

The Constitutional Court last week ruled that the ongoing detention of Altan and Alpay was disproportionate and infringed upon their rights to liberty, freedom of expression and freedom of the media.  However, lower courts later refused to adhere to the ruling and the journalists remain in prison.

“This refusal to implement the Constitutional Court decision is of grave concern, as it is related to the freedom of individuals,” he said. “I call on the authorities to ensure that the Constitutional Court decision of 11 January 2018 in the cases of Altan and Alpay is implemented and that they are released without any further delay.”