International human rights organization Amnesty International’s (AI) Kirklees branch Amnesty Kirklees in the United Kingdom (UK) has opened an exhibition titled the “Silenced Voices” in Huddersfield Parish Church between September 29-30 as a show a solidarity with the Turkish journalists who were jailed or exiled by Turkish government under the rule of autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
It was stated in an announcement made by Amnesty Kirklees that “The pews of the town Centre Church will be filled with photographs and information relating to those journalists who have been detained in a clampdown by the Turkish state following the attempted coup there.
“Our exhibition attempts to convey the impact of all these journalists being removed from society and stopping their role of telling truth to power and the people they are meant to serve. We want people to come into the church to see the photographs and help by writing a short message of support to a detained journalist on one of our post cards, an we will send it to them on your behalf.”
Turkey is the biggest jailer of journalists in the world. The most recent figures documented by the Stockholm Center for Freedom (SCF) has showed that 281 journalists and media workers are now in jails as of September 26, 2017, most in pre-trial detention languishing in notorious Turkish prisons without even a conviction. Of those in Turkish prisons, 256 are arrested pending trial, only 25 journalists remain convicted and serving time in Turkish prisons. An outstanding detention warrants remain for 135 journalists who live in exile or remain at large in Turkey.
Detaining tens of thousands of people over alleged links to the Gülen movement, the government also closed down more than 180 media outlets after the controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016. Turkey’s Contemporary Journalists’ Association (ÇGD) recently announced that more than 900 press cards were cancelled.