Norwegian PEN publishes report about freedom of expression in Turkey


The Norwegian PEN has published a special report titled ‘Turkey: Free Expression Under a Shadow’.

In the 60-page report, data and information related to violations of freedom of expression, the effects of the judicial system and the law on freedom of expression, self-censorship, the pressure on press, hate speech and freedom of religion and conscience take place.

Sara Whyatt is the lead author of the report and directed its research. Formerly Deputy Director of PEN International with an expertise on freedom of expression in Europe and Turkey, she is now a consultant. Interviews and research were carried out by Ceylan Begüm Yildiz and Esra Almas.

Sixteen of those interviewed for the report were writers, twelve were academics, seven were editors/journalists or publishers, nine were working for non-governmental, civil society or arts organisations; there were three translators, two artists, four students, and the remainder from other professions.

“Art galleries and venues are for artists what publishers and newspapers are for writers. Banu Karaca, arts academic, pointed out that: “Galleries and venues are reliant on support and patronage from government, so they are reluctant to display works that may lead to defamation cases.”
This makes artists, “[…] most vulnerable, as they are reliant on the Ministry of Culture for support. Public institutions are accountable to government, and even commercial galleries are reluctant to take on those who are in conflict with the state.” She added that artists’ problems are compounded by the fact that they, “[…] are not organised in the same way as journalists and writers are, and don’t know their rights, so they are more likely to self-censor.” ”
‘Turkey: Free Expression Under a Shadow’, page 41 (PDF-page 22)


» Read the full text of the report: Report final.pdf



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