Opposition newspapers banned in Turkish prison

The management of Menemen Prison in the western province of İzmir has banned the pro-Kurdish Özgürlükçü Demokrasi, the left-wing Evrensel and BirGün, and the opposition Cumhuriyet newspapers from the jail on the basis that they “applaud terrorism”, independent news site T24 said.

The announcement came after a prisoner named Ahmed Hami officially queried the ban and was told a decision had been made in the Penal System Institutions Library and Books Bylaws on the four newspapers, which had been banned for “applauding terror, terror organisations, and terrorists; discriminating within society based on ethnic roots; and containing expressions that insult our state institutions, our statesmen and our public servants.”

İzmir Journalists’ Association President Misket Dikmen condemned the sanction.

“Now they are trying to make certain newspapers look like terrorists,” he said. “As a press association we cannot accept this. We call on authorities to revoke this arbitrary action.”

“This is a clear rights violation,” the news site quoted opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) parliamentarian Barış Yarkadaş as saying. “The right of prisoners to receive news must be respected.”