Turkey’s state-run news agency cancels opposition newspaper's subscription

State-run Anadolu news agency has cancelled the subscription of opposition newspaper Sözcü following a row over news coverage. 

Sözcü, in a headline it ran on Monday, announced that will no longer be able to carry news announced by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and state institutions after Anadolu, its only source for such reports, cancelled the daily’s paid subscription.

Anadolu cancelled the subscription of Sözcü newspaper after it harshly criticised the agency’s reporting on prison sentences handed down to journalists working for Sözcü on charges of aiding a terrorist organisation.

Anadolu’s English reporting on the trial of Sözcü journalists had included remarks from “unidentified” witnesses, which did not exist in the Turkish report by the agency, according to Sözcü.

Anadolu, for its part, said the report was based on facts and only contained what had been disclosed in reports. 

Sözcü’s claim prompted Anadolu’s editor-in-Chief Şenol Kazancı to direct the agency to cancel Sözcü’s subscription services, citing a direct attack on the agency, Sözü said.

A Turkish court in December sentenced six journalists from opposition Sözcü daily, including its editor-in-chief, to jail on charges of supporting terrorism. The six, plus the newspaper’s finance manager, were found guilty of aiding the Fethullah Gülen movement, which Turkey accuses of masterminding a failed military coup in July 2016.