Turkish Police Raid Anti-Erdogan Newspaper Headquarters


Turkish police have raided the headquarters of the newspaper Zaman, a publication known to publish pieces critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Police are demanding to search the building and, according to witnesses, are equipped with water cannons.




The paper stated they did not have an exact reason why the police raided them on Wednesday, but “there have been rumors that the media outlet is among the targets of the government after another critical media group was seized late last month.”

The staff reported:

Police raided the headquarters of a number of media outlets early on Oct. 28 after the Ankara 5th Criminal Court of Peace ruled on Oct. 26 for the takeover of the administration of Koza İpek Holding’s companies, which includes critical media outlets in the İpek Media Group, in a government-backed move. The trustees then took over the management of the Bugün and Millet dailies, as well as the stations Bugün TV and Kanaltürk, following the police intervention, during which many journalists and protesters were subjected to excessive police force.

The Bugün and Millet dailies published their first editions after the trustees’ takeover on Oct. 30. Both papers contained what could be interpreted as propaganda from the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, with almost no reports on opposition parties, despite a general election being due to take place on Nov. 1. The newspapers under the management of the new trustees have since been turned into mouthpieces of the AK Party and Erdoğan. The new management has also fired tens of journalists working at those newspapers and hired pro-government journalists instead.

Turkish authorities have a long history of censoring unkind media towards the ruling party and President Erdoğan. They issued an arrest warrant for Zaman’s former editor-in-chief Ekrem Dumanlı for “attempting a coup” in September. The White House condemned the raids and attempts to censor the media.


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